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What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ? - IMG INT
01-13-2012, 05:23 AM, (This post was last modified: 11-14-2012, 06:26 AM by Negentropic.)
What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ? - IMG INT

This is an IMAGE & MEDIA INTENSIVE thread, not intended for the meek or those in love with their own dubious notions of 'sanity.' If you do not want to wait a few minutes for the page to load or you have an older junk computer, please do not visit this thread.

"The technique of infamy is to invent two lies and to get people arguing heatedly about which one of them is true." --- Ezra Pound

What Was Ezra Pound Like?

Lee Lady

"It would be too dangerous to allow authors to imagine themselves to be profound thinkers."

--- Balzac, in his critical article on Stendahl's The Charterhouse at Parma

I am certainly no Pound scholar. And although I knew E.P. when he was in St. Elizabeths in the late 50's, I have very little if any new information to contribute.

But I have noticed through subscribing to the Ezra Pound mailing list that many of those academics who have made a profession out of studying Pound don't seem to have any concept at all of who the man actually was. (Many of these academics seem to actually despise him.) One problem is apparently that academics like to work from documents. But when you read Pound's letters, and the transcripts of the radio broadcasts he made from Italy during the war, and his various published opinionated prose works, you see a very different person than the Pound seen by those who actually knew him.

Below, I simply want to quote from some of the standard reference materials to give an impressionistic portrait of Ezra Pound as seen by those who knew him.

In my opinion, if you look for the one salient detail that really brings Pound to life, it is Gertrude Stein's comment that he was the "village explainer." ("Met Ezra Pound. Didn't like him. Found him to be the village explainer. Very useful if you happen to be a village; if not, not.") I don't have much hope for any biography that doesn't highlight this comment.

I could I trust starve like a gentleman. It's listed as part of the poetic training, you know.
--- Ezra Pound

Pound, in my opinion, was in his youth (and really, still in his fifties) what in contemporary terms would be called a nerd. Extremely bright, quite arrogant intellectually, generous, with a lively interest in other human beings but a rather superficial one (see especially Lewis Hyde's book The Gift in this respect), a good judge of literature but not a good judge of people. (He was taken in by Mussolini's enormous personal charm just as much as the ladies in Franco Zefferelli's recent film Tea With Mussolini.)

If Pound had been born a little later and the circumstances of his life had been a little different, I think he would have been ideally suited to be a science fiction writer of the Golden Age of Science Fiction --- someone like Damon Knight or Frederick Pohl or, perhaps more to the point, A. E. van Vogt.

He was someone who looked at the surface, and he developed a form of poetry that looks at the surface, and developed an entire critical mystique to justify his idea that the important part of literature is what's on the surface; what's important, according to him, is the beauty of the language: melopeia, phanopeia, and mythopeia. (The ABC of Reading for the definitions.) "Literature is language that's highly charged with meaning." You never see Pound saying, "Literature is writing that sees deeply into the human heart," or anything of that sort.

One notices in his poetry that he tended to be much more at home with mythology and things that had happened at least fifty years previously than with the world around him.

He was not a thinker; he was an enthusiast. In the realm of literature, he did have some important ideas, but otherwise few of the non-literary ideas he promoted were his own. One might almost refer to him as a popularizer, except that the form in which he expressed his ideas made them quite inaccessible to all but a small audience.

Most of the quotations below have been taken from Charles Norman's book Ezra Pound (MacMillan, 1960).

Robert Graves on first meeting Pound (c. 1920): "From his poems, I had expected a brawny, loud-voiced, swashbuckling American; but he was plump, hunched, soft-spoken and ill-at-ease, with the limpest of handshakes." (Quoted in Charles Norman.)

Scofield Thayer, 1921 (quoted in Charles Norman's book): "Ezra Pound, of whom I have been seeing more rather than less, is a queer duck. He wears a pointed yellow [?] beard and an elliptical pince-nez and open Byronic collar and an omelette-yellow bathrobe. On entering a restaurant, one has observed him so awkward as unintentionally to knock over a waiter and then so self-conscious as to be unable to say he is sorry. But like most other people he means well, and unlike most other people he has a fine imagination. At close quarters, he is much more fair in his judgements than his correspondence and his books would warrent one to believe.

"When one arrives at his hotel on the street of the Holy Fathers, one usually learns from the young lady that Mr. Pound is au bain. But the young lady consents to go upstairs and inquire if Mr Pound will see guests. Mr. Pound receives, beaming and incisive."

Hemingway, in A Moveable Feast (p. 108): "His own writing, when he would hit it right, was so perfect, and he was sincere in his mistakes and so enamored of his errors, and so kind to people that I often thought of him as a kind of saint."

Hemingway in 1925: "We have Pound, the major poet, devoting, say, one fifth of his time to poetry. With the rest of his time he tries to advance the fortunes, both material and artistic, of his friends. He defends them when they are attacked, he gets them into magazines and out of jail. He lends them money. He sells their pictures. He arranges concerts for them. He writes articles about them. He introduces them to wealthy women. He gets publishers to take their books. He sits up all night with them when they claim to be dying and he witnesses their wills. He advances them hospital expenses and dissuades them from suicide. And in the end, a few of them refrain from knifing him at the first opportunity.

"Personally, he is tall, has a patchy red beard, strange haircuts and is very shy. But he has the temperament of a toro di lidia from the breeding establishments of Don Eduardo Miura. No one ever presents a cape, or shakes a muleta at him without getting a charge. Like Don Eduardo's product, too, he sometimes ignores the picador's horse to pick off the man and no one goes into the ring with him in safety. And though they can always be sure of drawing his charge yet he gets his quota of bull-baiters each year." (Reprinted in An Examination of Ezra Pound, edited by Peter Russell.)

Of course one of the things that Pound is famous for is having been able to recognize the talent of a large number of extremely notable writers and having helped them get started on their careers and gain recognition. And certainly Pound's judgement in this respect was very astute. But I believe that even more than this is true: I believe that even some of the young writers Pound helped developed into notable literary figures precisely because of Pound's help. It seems clear to me that this was certainly true, for instance, of H.D., who had been Pound's sweetheart back in Pennsylvania before he, and eventually she, came to Europe. Certainly H.D. deserves credit for her wonderful talent. But, in my opinion (based mostly on reading her autobiographical book An End to Torment), she would never have developed that talent and become a poet if it hadn't been for Pound's encouragement. And T.S. Eliot, on numerous occasions over the years, expressed his opinion that Pound's help was absolutely crucial in his own development as a serious poet. (Eliot's talent was certainly there from the beginning. He wrote "Prufrock," for instance, before meeting Pound. But Pound, as I understand it, was the one who encouraged him to take his poetry seriously rather than thinking of it as an amusing hobby.)

In 1959, E.E. Cummings wrote about the Pound of the Twenties (quotation also taken from Charles Norman), "During our whole promenade, Ezra was more than wonderfully entertaining: he was magically gentle, as only a great man can be."

Margaret Anderson (editor of the Little Review) in 1923 (again quoted from Norman's book): "He was dressed in the large velvet beret and flowing tie of the Latin Quarter artist of the 1830's. He was totally unlike any picture I had formed of him. Photographs could have given no idea of his height, his robustness, his red blondness -- could have given no idea of his high Teddy Roosevelt voice, his nervousness, his self-consciousness. After an hour in his studio I felt that I had been sitting through a human experiment in a behaviorist laboratory. Ezra's agitation was not of the type to which we were accustomed in America -- excitement, pressure, life too high-geared. It gave me somehow the sensation of watching a baby perform its repetoire of physical antics gravely, diffidently, without human responsibility for the performance."

She commented on his tendancy to "orientalize" his attitude toward women, who he kissed on the forehead or drew upon his knee. She concluded: "It will be interesting to know him when he has grown up."

In 1929, in A Packet for Ezra Pound, Yeats wrote his famous description of Pound's kindness to the stray cats in Rapallo: "Sometimes about ten o'clock at night I accompany him to a street where there are hotels upon one side, upon the other palm trees and the sea, and there, taking out of his pocket bones and pieces of meat, he begins to call the cats. He knows all their histories -- the brindled cat looked like a skeleton until he began to feed it; that fat gray cat is an hotel proprietor's favorite, it never begs from the guests' tables and it turns cats that do not belong to the hotel out of the garden; this black cat and that grey cat over there fought on the roof of a four-storied house some weeks ago, fell off, a whirling ball of claws and fur, and now avoid each other."

But then Yeats felt compelled to add: "Yet now that I recall the scene I think that he has no affection for the cats -- `some of them so ungrateful,' a friend says -- he never nurses the café's cat, I cannot imagine him with a cat of his own."

Yeats proposes an explanation as follows: "Cats are oppressed, dogs terrify them, landladies starve them, boys stone them, everybody speaks of them with contempt. If they were human beings we could talk of their oppressors with a studied violence, add our strength to theirs, even organize the oppressed and like good politicians sell our charity for power."

And yet, somehow, five or ten years later, Pound was unable to see that the Jews in Germany and the German-occupied countries, and eventually, toward the end of the war, in Italy itself, were in a situation very comparable to the cats in Rapallo. (According to Eustace Mullins's biography of Pound, however, he did give assistance to some Jewish families that had escaped from Germany. I think the only confirmation of this, though, is Pound's own account.)

Reading Yeats's account of Pound's care for the stray cats in Rapallo makes me think of Pound's care of John Chatell, one of the young regular visitors to St. Elizabeths in the late 50's. I would eventually learn that Chatell's family owned an extremely successful real estate company which handled a lot of expensives houses in Georgetown. But Chatell himself lived the life of a poor student (without actually being a student, except at the `Ezuversity'). Marcella Spann Booth's memoirs in Paideuma have reminded me of the way Pound used to mother him, scavenging hospital food for him to take home.

In 1928 or 1929, Yeats wrote to Richard Aldington, "In his work, Ezra can be abrupt and barbarous; when he wants, he can be a pleasant companion and the most generous of men. He is sensitive, highly strung, and irascible. All this throwing down of fire-irons and spluttering of four-letter words is merely Ezra's form of defense against a non too considerate world. I should say Ezra has had to put up with far more annoyances from other people than they have from him."

Certainly his "abrupt and barbarous" manner has caused a number of people who know his political views only through his letters and radio broadcasts to completely misjudge the tone of his attitudes (although certainly the content alone was at times reprehensible enough!)

Writers, artists, musicians, and the like (even mathematicians!) who are widely acclaimed as boy wonders in their twenties often find it difficult to find a path to follow as they reach maturity, and this seems to have been some of what happened to Pound after he moved to Italy and entered his fifties.

Pound's fiftieth birthday was in 1935, and about that time one began to learn the answer to Margaret Anderson's question of what Pound would be like "when he grows up," and the answer was not a pretty one. His old friends now often returned from visiting him in Rapallo to report that he was querrulous and intolerant of any disagreement with his opinions, which many now found quite bizarre. Some (Joyce, for instance) found him in fact quite insane.

Pound had now achieved a great triumph, which also seemed to have been his downfall: namely, the world was now taking him seriously. And yet despite having a couple dozen books to his name and being fairly universally recognized as one of the world's great living poets, he was not well off financially, only surviving because of the income from his wife's inheritance. (When this money became inaccessible during the Second World War, his life became one of almost drastic poverty.)

Being taken seriously was, as I see it, an extremely pernicious thing for Pound, because it encouraged him to take himself far more seriously than was compatible with rationality. The brash egotism which had earlier been seen as tolerable and somewhat natural in a bright young man now seemed to be turning into an irrational egomania. And it encouraged the world to look at his stupidities, in particular his radio broadcasts, much more harshly than would have been the case if the world had still seen him as the extremely bright but eccentric writer that he had been in London and Paris during his thirties and forties -- in some ways, not only the village explainer, but also the village fool, albeit a highly intelligent fool; almost an idiot savant. (It's important to remember, though, that in the context of the 1930's, Pound's support for Mussolini and for eccentric (we would now say "crackpot") economic theories were not as bizarre as they now seem to us in retrospect, and were shared by many notable intellectuals of the time. Until Mussolini invaded Ethiopia in 1935, his support both in Europe and the U.S. was widespread, including the Luce publications: Time, Life, and Fortune.)

In Humphrey Carpenter's biography A Serious Character, Robert Fitzgerald is quoted as saying that Pound's letters and articles written during the Rapallo period "had the tone of a man no longer in touch.... What had seemed high-hearted and rather Olympian fun began to seem childish and beside the point. Only a man working in isolation, without criticism or ignoring it, could have failed to see the fretfulness and poverty of argument."

It's always important to remember, though, as Fitzgerald acknowledged, that throughout his life Pound in person was very different and much pleasanter than Pound on paper. However Carpenter also quotes Giuseppe Bacigalupo as having noted an unpleasant change in manner at his occasional meetings with Pound, saying, "It was not possible to hold a normal conversation.... He had come increasingly to adopt the attitude of someone who assumes that the person he is talking to shares his own interests and knowledge, so that some cryptic allusion seemed to him to be enough to explain what he was thinking --- a hypothesis which was far from well founded."

(This manner of speaking by means of references to totally obscure books or historical events as if of course this would totally clarify the matter for the listener was very much what I noticed of him at St. Elizabeths. Although I don't think that this is a valid sign of insanity, one can readily understand why psychiatrists who talked to him briefly would get the impression that he was totally insane.)

In any case, Pound in Rapallo seemed, as always, to be having a very good time. In Humphrey Carpenter's book, James Laughlin is quoted on the subject of Pound at the movies.

The movies were simply awful, but Ezra loved them. He'd sit up in the gallery with a cowboy hat on and his feet on the rail, eating peanuts, roaring with laughter.

The fact is, it seems as though Pound in many ways never did "grow up." Almost all the available photographs of Pound make him look like a very "serious character" (the phrase which Humphrey Carpenter used as the title of his biography on Pound), and because of this they totally misrepresent Pound. They certainly look nothing at all like the images in my own memory. One characteristic that most people who knew Pound, from his twenties into his seventies if not his eighties, seem to agree on was a joyous quality along with a boyishness which at times seemed to verge on an insane immaturity. In the PBS Voices and Visions program on Pound, one of the former officials in the Fascist government reports that when they tried to discourage Pound from his radio broadcasts during the war, and asked him whether he realized how seriously such an action would be considered and how serious the consequences for him might be, his response was to laugh and to say that such a concern was absurd.

In the Pisan detention camp, where he was at first barbarically prisoned in an open iron cage (after all, the Army thought of him as a despicable traitor, an American who had supposedly broadcast propaganda for the Fascists), he became a camp character, and his self-devised bizarre exercise ritual, including fencing and playing tennis with imaginary opponents using an old broom handle, became a source of amusement for the guards. Many of the guards developed an affection for the old man, and started showing him various kindnesses in violation of their orders.

He told the medics in the camp that the United States government would never try him for treason, because he "had too much on several people in Washington." (My source here, as for most of this, are the biographies by Charles Norman and Humphrey Carpenter.)

As he left the camp to be flown to the United States, he put his hand under his chin to indicate a noose and made a pantomine gesture of being hanged. And when the plane became airborne, he started laughing, because he'd never been in the air before. (This was reported by Olga Rudge in the PBS Voices and Visions program.)

When Pound was first put into St. Elizabeths mental hospital, he was put into Howard Hall, where the most dangerous patients were kept, because the staff at St. Elizabeths had been told that he was a serious criminal. Although the time in Howard Hall was a horrible ordeal as one can see from Humphrey Carpenter's biography (aside from everything else, he was never allowed to go outside during this period), when he talked about the experience several times later in my presence, he expressed amusement that the authorities would consider him dangerous enough to warrent this treatment and said that it gave him the opportunity to meet a couple of murderers, which had been an interesting new experience for him.

Even after Pound was moved to the more benign Chestnut Ward, his conditions at St Elizabeths would be seen as intolerable to most people. He had a tiny little room which was mostly packed with books, notebooks, and the like, with a small cot to sleep on. Humphrey Carpenter quotes from a report that

His room was a confusion of jars, bottles, boxes, make-shift containers filled with dainties, exotics, and plain fare of bread, cheese, ham, sweets... and all the left-over food he could `pouch' three times a day at St. Liz. The main purpose of his bulging larder was to feel the starving artist; jar after jar of food went of the grounds `for the noble purpose of nourishing the arts.'

He was surrounded by mentally ill patients, with whom he seemed to stay on fairly good terms. Apparently the inmates in the asylum were in fact quite devoted to him, and he seemed to enjoy them. In either Charles Norman's biography or Humphrey Carpenter's, there is a report from someone who visited Pound at St Liz, that while Pound was commenting on his lawn chairs, which he found the ideal furniture, one of the inmates said, "Yes, and not only has he got a lawn chair, but he's got a heart bigger than all Washington."

Despite the appalling conditions he lived under, it is my personal belief (which many will certainly argue with) that the years at St Elizabeths, at least after the first few --- the later years when he was allowed to spend the afternoons outside on the lawn in good weather and allowed whatever visitors he chose --- were the best years of Pound's life since he left London and Paris. But of course it was only for a few hours each day that he could spend time with visitors.

Pound's old friends in the literary world were often bothered by the indiscriminateness of his friendliness to visitors, and seemed to think that there was something wrong with Pound's being friendly to people with so little stature. But E.P. seemed to be equally interested in and friendly toward just about everybody (and despite his well known anti-semitism, this apparently included those Jews who managed to visit him). When Sheri's lover Gilbert Lee was sent to the penitentiary for dealing heroin, E.P.'s attitude was apparently that this was regretable, but typical of the trouble that artists get themselves into when they're young. In a letter subsequent to Gilbert's release, Pound wrote, "Well, he's apparently devoting himself to composing jazz now." (Gilbert was a jazz pianist, and earned his living as an auto mechanic. Unfortunately, a few years later he had an accident while working on a car that seriously damaged his fingers and consequently ended his career as a musician. Years later, when I met him and Sheri again in San Francisco, he was still an auto mechanic.)

The regular visitors, mostly young, were interesting people. Pound was known as a traitor and someone with extremist political views, including anti-semitism, and he fact that someone would choose to visit E.P. regularly was a pretty good indication that this was someone who was willing to color outside the lines and had a desire to learn more about the world than what was taught in conventional educational institutions. (With a very few exceptions, academics did not visit Pound. Becoming familiar with Pound did not then seem a good way to advance an academic career.) Diane DiPrima was a regular visitor for a while, although unfortunately that was before the time I showed up. There were Reno Odlin, Hollis Frampton, and too many others who I no longer remember. And Pound thoroughly enjoyed some of the young disciples who never went on to become famous, especially John Chatel ("young Chatel," as E.P. so often called him in his letters), who Pound scrounged food for from the hospital cafeteria.

Sheri Martinelli was truly delightful and was in some ways, I believe, a woman as remarkable as Lou Andreas-Salomé (an intimate friend of Niezsche, Rilke, and Freud). (After reading H.D.'s memoir An End to Torment, I realized that Sheri was also in many ways a younger copy of H.D.) Most of Pound's biographers have not bothered to learn much about Sheri, but she had been a protege of Anais Nin before putting herself under Pound's wing. Both Anatole Broyard and William Gaddis were in love with Sheri in the Forties. Sheri was in some sense (it's probably impossible now to ever establish to exactly what extent) E.P.'s lover, but she was much more like a favored daughter. She usually referred to him as Maestro and her affection toward him, mixed with deep reverence, was like that one might have to a favorite older relative.

Sheri brought him cookies, fudge, and jasmine tea. In a short article in Paideuma (volume 13), Marcella Spann gives an account of Pound jumping out of his chair and running across the lawn to greet Sheri with his most affectionate and energetic bear hug. The cookies she has brought scatter about them, and Sheri exclaims: "Grampa is the only man in the world you can bring cookies and before he can eat one of them, he drops them all on the ground; and before you can help him pick them up, he steps on every one."

In a lot of ways, I think the circle on the lawn at St Elizabeths was very much like the friends Pound had associated with in Paris and London, although unfortunately not endowed with comparable talent. (And I have to say that E.P. certainly did little to help bring out what talents we may have had. His prescriptions were much too dogmatic to be helpful.)

And of course we provided Pound with what he had always wanted: an appreciative audience. We were an uncritical audience, of course, but many of us did the required homework. We all read Pound's translations of Confucius, not to mention the Cantos and Pound's other books, as well as the monographs by Fenellosa and Louis Agassiz and Alexander Del Mar published by the Square Dollar Press. I, for one, also read Eimi amd The Enormous Room by E.E. Cummings, several novels by Ford Madox Ford and Wyndham Lewis, and also the autobiography of Martin van Buren and Thomas Hart Benton's enormous memoir Thirty Years in the Senate. In the Library of Congress (which at that time was open to high school students) I was able to find copies of Blast, the Vorticist magazine edited by Pound and Wyndham Lewis in the Twenties. Later, because of E.P.'s recommendation, I would subscribe to the Congressional Record for at least a year, reading it fairly thoroughly although not cover to cover. (And yes, I also read The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, although it was not E.P. himself who recommended them or gave them to me.)

E.P. usually referred to himself as "Grampa," and all the younger visitors were encouraged to do likewise.

But many people of stature, both old acquainances and writers who Pound had never met before, did in fact come and visit E.P. at St Liz --- more than would have ever visited him at Rapallo. One of the major disappointments for me was having missed meeting both E.E. Cummings (a long-time friend of Pound's, of course) and Tennessee Williams, because they came in the middle of the week when I was in school. (Sheri reported that Cummings wore a suit with a vest and pocket watch and looked like the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland. To her disgust, E.P. and Cummings spent most of their time together talking about the weather.) A son or grandson of Frank Lloyd Wright showed up one weekend. And there were a few bright young academics: Hugh Kenner, Guy Davenport, and Professor Giovannini from Catholic University.

Considering the harshness with which he often attacked both friend and foe in his correspondance and his published writings, one of the amazing things about E.P. was that just about everyone who ever knew him personally, including those who were vehemently opposed to his ideas, loved him. And many of his old colleagues who might otherwise have simply dropped him went out of their way to send friendly communications to him in St. Elizabeths simply because of the injustice with which they believed he was being treated. (They saw him as a fool, not a traitor or a criminal.) Eliot, Williams, and Hemingway were among those who continued to regularly correspond with him, despite drastic political differences. I suspect that even Joyce would have written him a letter from time to time if he'd still been alive, although certainly Joyce had every reason to feel aggrieved by Pound's treatment of him.

Humphrey Carpenter's biography on Pound (A Serious Character) in Chapter 13 quotes the following report by Louis Dudek on Pound at St. Elizabeths.

He continually kept doing little things to make us comfortable: cutting the fruit ... and passing it around; pouring the tea out of a thermos; offering newspapers to lay on the grass for sitting; bringing out books, magazines, letters from a bag... He would also feed the birds... Said Mrs Pound: `He would never do that in the old days; he was always too busy, always doing something.'

This description (and some of the other reports Carpenter quotes in the same chapter) agree very much with my own memories of St Elizabeths. Although Pound has often been called a narcissist, and was certainly an egomaniac, he was always very attentive to the people around him (including the orderlies and at least many of the patients at the hospital) and took a keen interest in the lives of his regular visitors and was concerned for their well being. As mentioned above, he regularly scavenged hospital food for John Chatel ("young Chatel," as he called him in his letters), and possibly some of the other starving artists and writers among his visitors as well.

I think that one can see here a strong continuity here between the Pound in Paris in the 1920's, as described by passages quoted above from Charles Norman's book, and the Pound in St. Elizabeths during the 1950's.

Some academics now take the fact that John Kasper was welcome at St. Elizabeths as proof that Pound was a racist. But in fact, although Pound's anti-semitism was quite conspicuous in almost all his conversations, he was not notably racist. (Furthermore, although Kasper was later to become infamous as a White supremacist, his personal attitudes toward Negroes seemed to be rather confused.) For the most part, everyone was welcome at St. Elizabeths, provided only that they were willing to listen to Pound respectfully and try to learn from him. (Journalists were usually not welcome. Jews were usually not welcome, although they were usually treated courteously if they did show up.)

When I started visiting Pound at St. Elizabeths, one of the first things I wondered about was whether he was actually sane or not. At the time, I know not the slightest thing about mental illness, so all I could do was to judge whether he seemed basically rational or not.

Pound certainly had his own style of communicating. On my first visit, I couldn't understand a word he said. Later, I started to catch on to his style. The comments by Giuseppe Bacigalupo quoted above describe this fairly well. To repeat,

He had come increasingly to adopt the attitude of someone who assumes that the person he is talking to shares his own interests and knowledge, so that some cryptic allusion seemed to him to be enough to explain what he was thinking --- a hypothesis which was far from well founded.
One had to read the correct books and learn the right things in order to make sense of what E.P. was saying. To my seventeen-year-old self at the time, this did not seem completely unreasonable, and once I had learned the background material, Pound's talk seemed fairly reasonable.

Reading the ABC of Reading and his other books was a big help, because I realized that a lot of his discourse when there was a big crowd present consisted of quotations from his books; slogans such as "Artists are the antennae of the race" or "Great literature is news that stays news." This was perhaps an unusual form of communication, but it seemed quite rational and deliberate; he believed that these slogans were very fundamental truths which it was important to re-iterate over and over again in the hopes that they would finally sink in for the listener.

Later on, when I experienced him in small groups of friends, I found his conversation quite ordinary. He was quite capable of small talk.

One day Sheri, as I recall (or it may have been John Chatel), mentioned that recently St. Elizabeths had been granting weekend furloughs to some of the patients so that they could spend time with their families, and complained that it was unfair that EP had not been granted a similar privilege. But he responded quite calmly that after all, he was charged with a extremely serious federal crime, and so naturally the hospital would be ultra-cautious about relaxing their control.

Oddly enough, this is the one case where I think Pound's usual complaint of oppression by his enemies could have been justified. A lot of influential people, both in Congress and otherwise, hated Pound because of his anti-semitism and in particular because of his radio broadcasts (very few people in those days were familiar with the actual contents of the broadcasts, which were then only available in the Library of Congress on microfilm) and might have raised a big stink if St. Elizabeths had allowed him any sort of freedom.

On many other occasions, though, he claimed that he was being kept incarcerated, or that publishers were refusing to include his work in anthologies, because the government or the banking interests wanted to suppress some of the information he would reveal to the public. Even at the time, I was considerably skeptical of this.

But one can't claim that someone is crazy just because some of his opinions are irrational. The fact is that very few people are able and willing to apply critical thinking to their own beliefs about politics, religion, and the like, although most of us are quite capable of subjecting the beliefs of those who disagree with us to rigorous critical analysis.

In retrospect, though, I do think that Pound had a megalomania that went beyond the bounds of rationality.

[Image: 3c13902v.jpg]

Ezra Pound, Tristan Tzara, Man Ray, Kiki, Mina Loy, Jane Heap, Jean Cocteau, Martha Dennison and others, Jockey Club Paris 1923

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Ezra Pound with Tristan Tzara, Man Ray, Jean Cocteau, and others.

". . . the collapse of our civilization in the war of the 1860's . . . The total democracy bilge, by which I mean the cliches, the assumptions, the current cant about "the people" arose from sheer misunderstanding or perversion. Perversion of ideas by means and by misuse of words. The disequality of human beings can be observed. . . . There is no more equality between men than between animals." -- Ezra Pound, National Culture - A Manifesto 1938


[Image: Pound_Ezra.jpg]

Ezra Pound, heralded as the 'founding father of modern English literature' yet denied honours during his life, was born in a frontier town in Idaho in 1885, the son of an assistant assayer and the grandson of a Congressman.

He enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania in 1901 and in 1906 was awarded his MA degree. He had already started work on his magnum opus, The Cantos. An avid reader of Anglo-Saxon, classical and medieval literature, Pound continued post-graduate work on the Troubadour musician-poets of medieval Provence. In 1908 Pound travelled to Venice. There he paid $8.00 for the printing of the first volume of his poetry, A Lume Spento (With tapers quenched).

Pound then went to London to meet W B Yeats, and became a dominant figure in Yeats's Monday evening circle, serving for a time as Yeats's secretary. He quickly gained recognition in London, and came into contact with the English Review that was publishing the works of D. H. Lawrence and the author, painter and critic Wyndham Lewis. In 1911 Pound launched his campaign for innovative writing in The New Age edited by the monetary reformer A. R. Orage. For Pound the new poetry of the century would be "austere, direct, free from emotional slither."

The following year Pound founded the Imagist movement in literature. He was by now already helping to launch the careers of William Carlos Williams, T. S. Eliot, Hemingway and James Joyce. He was now also the mentor of Yeats, Pound's senior by 20 years and with world recognition. In 1914 Pound started the Vorticist movement. The impetus originally came from the avant garde sculptor Henri Gaudier-Brzeski. With Wyndham Lewis and others, they launched the magazine Blast. This was also the year of the world war, which took its toll of many Vorticists.

Vorticism was for Pound the first major experience in revolutionary propagandising and the first cause that placed him beyond the pale of orthodoxy. Pound describes Vorticism as setting "the arts in their rightful place as the acknowledged guide and lamp of civilisation". In this way, the arts were welded in a mystic union with politics and society in the manner already envisaged by Yeats.

Pound regarded commercialism as the force preventing the realisation of his artistic-political ideal. Many others in his entourage and beyond, including Yeats and Lewis regarded the rise of materialism, democracy and the masses as demeaning the arts, as newspapers and dime novels replaced literature, and the mass market determined cultural expression. Hence, many were to seek a counter-revolution in the return of aristocratic societies or saw a modem alternative in Fascism.


Pound embraced the Social Credit economic theory of Major CH Douglas, being promoted by The English Review. By subordinating money to the interests of society rather than allowing the power of the bankers to run unfettered, money would become the servant of society and not the master. Money or more correctly credit would be the lubricant of commerce, a means of exchanging goods and services, rather than a profit making commodity in itself. Hence, the corrupting influence of the power of money on culture and work would be eliminated. During the 1930s and 40s Pound wrote a series of booklets on economics, succinctly and lucidly describing economic theory and history.

At the same time Pound continued to be inspired by the classical mystery religions and by the 'love cult' of the Troubadours, who had been suppressed. He was also impressed by the ideas of Confucius who taught a civic religion that assigned everyone a social duty, from emperor to peasant as, a means of achieving a balanced social order. He saw later, in fascist Italy, the attainment of such a State.


Pound considered in Fascism the fulfilment of Social Credit policy, in breaking the power of the bankers over politics and culture. He considered that artists formed a social elite "born to rule", but not as part of a democratic mandate.

"Artists are the antennae of the race, but the bullet-headed many will never learn to trust their great artists."

Pound had written in 1914 that the artist "has had sense enough to know that humanity was unbearably stupid... But he has also tried to lead and persuade it, to save it from itself."

In 1922 Pound wrote that the masses are malleable and that it is the arts that set the casts to mould them. For Pound and others such as Wyndham Lewis and Lawrence, behind mass-man and its doctrines of democracy and communism, stood the real tyranny of the bankers. Pound considered the bulk of humanity to be 'rabble', "the waste and their manure" from which grows "the tree of the arts."

He writes in The Cantos of the masses and their political leaders becoming a torrent of excrement, "democracies electing their sewage."

If one considers that the very essence of being human, of that which differentiates man from all other organisms, is the attainment of culture, then those from the culture-bearing minority of any society are definers of the human type. The masses of people are herded around by a variety of forces, both malignant and benign. Many of the culture-bearing stratum, as we are considering them here, saw the rise of a new era that placed economics above culture. Both communism and democracy sold their economic doctrines under the slogan of the 'happiness of the greatest number', as being the ultimate purpose of a social order. The moneyed elite has replaced the cultural elite as the definers of the human type. The aristocracy of money has replaced the old aristocracy of blood.

Pound, Lewis and Yeats all viewed the rise of these fundamentally a-cultural doctrines with alarm. Some like Pound saw in fascism the means by which the economic could be subordinated to the cultural. Then the masses could be harnessed for a cultural purpose by an 'artist-statesmen' such as Mussolini. Others such as Yeats believed a return to an older order, based on aristocracy and its patronage of the arts was the way back to something better than crass materialism and what was then developing into the pop culture of our time. Pound hoped the natural rulers "born to the purple", would wrest control from the plutocrats and Bolsheviks.

Writing in "The Egoist" in 1914 Pound stated:

"The artist no longer has any belief or suspicion that the mass, the half-educated simpering general... can in any way share his delights... The aristocracy of the arts is ready again for its service. Modern civilisation has born a race with brains like those of rabbits, and we who are the heirs of the witch doctor and the voodoo, we artists who have been so long despised are about to take over control."

For those who value things beyond the material, such a cast-mould is preferable to that which has dominated the past two centuries, that of the merchant and the banker. Pound saw Fascism as the culmination of an ancient tradition continued in the personalities of Mussolini, Hitler and the British Fascist leader Sir Oswald Mosley. He had studied the doctrines of the ethnologist Frobenius during the 1920s, which gave a mystical interpretation to race. Cultures were the product of races and each race had its own soul, or paideuma of which the artist was the guardian. In Mussolini, Pound saw not only a statesman who had overthrown the money power, but also someone who had returned culture to the centre of politics. He said:

"Mussolini has told his people that poetry is a necessity of state, and this displayed a higher state of civilisation than in London or Washington."

Writing in his 1935 book Jefferson and/or Mussolini Pound explained:

"I don't believe any estimate of Mussolini will be valid unless it starts from a passion for construction. Treat him as ARTIFEX and all the details fall into place.. The Fascist revolution was FOR the preservation of certain liberties and FOR the maintenance of a certain level of culture, certain standards of living..."

Pound and his wife Dorothy settled in Italy in 1924. He met Mussolini in 1933. He also became a regular contributor to the periodicals of Mosley's British Union of Fascists, meeting Mosley in 1936. They remained friends into the post war period.

Writing in Mosley's BUF Quarterly, Pound stated that Roosevelt and his Jewish advisers had betrayed the American Revolution. The American Revolution of 1776 had been a revolt against the control by the Bank of England of the monetary system of the American colonies. Indeed, Benjamin Franklin had stated in his diary that the colonists would have gladly borne the tax on tea. They had issued their own colonial script reminiscent of the social credit policy that Pound was advocating, and which was being undertaken in Italy and Germany. This had resulted in prosperity with a credit supply independent of the private banking system. The Bank of England intervened to compel the colonies to withdraw the script at a rate of devaluation that caused depression and unemployment. The colonists rebelled. But people such as Alexander Hamilton ensured that an independent America was soon again subject to the orthodox financial system of private banking control. Lincoln attempted the same resistance to the bankers and issued his famous 'Lincoln Greenbacks'.

Pound pointed out in that Mussolini had instituted banking reform in 1935, and deplored the lack of knowledge and understanding around the world on what Italy was achieving. The U.S. constitution provided for the same credit system, giving the government the prerogative to create and issue its own credit and currency. Pound saw parallels between Fascist Italy and the type of economic system sought by certain American statesmen such as Jefferson and Jackson.

Pound's Canto XLV (With Usura) is a particularly lucid exposition of how the usury system infects social and cultural bodies. He provides a note at the end defining usury: as "a charge for the use of purchasing power, levied without regard to production: often even without regard to the possibilities of production". That is to say, what we commonly know as interest rates charged on loans for credit which the banks create largely out of nothing, i.e. as a book-keeping entry, for which we all, individuals, businesses and governments must pay back in real money as a token of our work.

"With usura...
no picture is made to endure nor to live with
but it is made to sell and to sell quickly
with usura, sin against nature,
is thy bread ever more of stale rags
is thy bread dry as paper ..
And no man can find site for his dwelling.
Stone cutter is kept from his stone
Weaver is kept from his loom
Wool comes not to market
Sheep bring not gain with usura...
Usura rusteth the chisel
It rusteth the craft and the craftsman
It gnaweth the thread in the loom...
Usuru slayeth the child in the womb
It stayeth the young man's courting
It hath brought palsey to bed. lyeth
Between the young bride and her bridegroom
They have brought whores to Eleusis
Corpses are set to banquet
At behest of usura."

Elsewhere Pound describes usury as like sodomy, against the law of natural increase.


From the late 1930s Pound began to look with favour at the economic system created by Hitler's regime, and regarded the Rome-Berlin Axis as "the first serious attack on usurocracy since the time of Lincoln."

In 1940, after having returned to Italy from a tour of the USA during which he attempted to oppose the move to war against the Axis, Pound offered his services as a radio broadcaster. The broadcasts, called The American Hour, began in January 1941. Pound considered himself to be a patriotic American. He considered the real traitors to be Roosevelt and his mainly Jewish advisers. After the Roosevelt instigated Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour Pound attempted to return to the USA. However, the American Embassy prevented him. Pound was stranded in Italy. With no means of livelihood, Pound resumed his broadcasts, attacking the Roosevelt administration and usury with a mix of cultural criticism.

In 1943 Pound was indicted in for treason. Hemingway, concerned at the fate of his old mentor after the war, suggested the possibility of an 'insanity' plea and the idea caught on among some of his literary friends who had obtained good jobs in the US Government. Other interests were pressing for the death penalty for America's most eminent man of letters.

Two days after Mussolini's murder Pound was taken from his home by Italian partisans after he had unsuccessfully attempted to turn himself over to the American forces. Putting a book on Confucius into his pocket, he went with the partisans expecting to be murdered, as a bloodlust was now turned against all those who had been loyal to Mussolini. Instead, he ended up in an American camp at Pisa constructed for the most vicious military prisoners. Pound was confined in a bare, concrete floored, iron cage in the burning heat, lit continuously throughout the night. He had a physical breakdown and was transferred to a medical compound, where he began his Pisan Cantos. In November 1945, he was flown to Washington and jailed.

He, like Knut Hamsun in Norway, was an embarrassment due to his fame. A trial would bring prolonged publicity. He was therefore declared insane and sent to a ward for the criminally insane at St. Elizabeth's mental institution. Here his literary output continued over the course of 13 years, and he translated 300 traditional Chinese poems that were published by Harvard in 1954.

Pound maintained his political beliefs and among his visitors was John Kasper, a fiery young intellectual admirer of Pound's poetry, who became notorious as an agitator for racial segregation in the southern United States of America.

Pound had still not been formally diagnosed in 1953. Inquiries from the Justice Department solicited an admission that at most Pound had a 'personality disorder'. By the mid-1950s, various influential figures and magazines were campaigning for his release, and the poet Robert Frost was particularly instrumental in gaining his release. After 13 years confinement Pound's treason indictment was dismissed on the 18th April 1958.

On 30 June 1958, Pound set sail for Italy. When he reached Naples, he gave the fascist salute to journalists and declared "all America is an asylum." He continued with The Cantos, and stayed in contact with political personalities such as Kasper and Oswald Mosley. He remained defiantly opposed to the American system when giving interviews, despite the protests to the Italian government by US diplomats. Because of his politics, Ezra Pound was refused the honours due to him until after his death on 1st November 1972.

Kerry Bolton

“Ezra Pound Speaking”

01-19-2012, 04:43 PM, (This post was last modified: 09-29-2012, 04:28 PM by Negentropic.)
RE: What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ?

no other parts posted as yet

Homosexual, Communist, Poet, Linguist, Journalist, Novelist & Film Director Pier Paolo Pasolini Interviews Ezra Pound

The original English version of the poem that Pasolini reads in Italian translation in the above video:

"Master thyself, then others shall thee beare

Pull down thy vanity

Thou art a beaten dog beneath the hail
A swollen magpie in a fitful sun,
Half black half white
Nor knowst'ou wing from tail
Pull down thy vanity
How mean thy hates
Fostered in falsity
Pull down thy vanity
Rathe to destroy, niggard in charity
Pull down thy vanity,
I say pull down.

But to have done instead of not doing
this is not vanity
To have, with decency, knocked
That a Blunt should open
To have gathered from the air a live tradition
or from a fine old eye the unconquered flame
This is not vanity
Here error is all in the not done,
all in the diffidence that faltered . . .
---- Ezra Pound

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Bernardo Bertolucci and Pier Paolo Pasolini near Rome during the filming of Pasolini’s first film ‘Accattone’, which Bertolucci worked on as a scriptwriter. In 1962, at the age of 22, Bertolucci directed his first feature film, produced by Tonino Cervi with a screenplay by Pier Paolo Pasolini, called La commare secca (1962). Photograph: Marina Cicogna. Via: The Observer.

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Olga Rudge (13 April 1895, Youngstown, Ohio – 15 March 1996) was an American-born concert violinist, now mainly remembered as the long-time mistress of the poet Ezra Pound, by whom she had a daughter, Mary.

A gifted [1] concert violinist of international repute, her considerable talents [2] and reputation were eventually eclipsed by those of her lover, in whose shade she appeared content to remain. In return, Pound was more loyal, not to say faithful, to her than to any of his many other mistresses. He dedicated the final stanza of his epic The Cantos to her, in homage and gratitude for her courageous and loyal support of Pound during his 13 year incarceration in a mental hospital after having been indicted for treasonous activities against the United States and in support of Benito Mussolini's Fascist regime. She also defended Pound against the accusation that he was anti-Semitic. During the last 11 years of Pound's life, Rudge was his devoted companion, secretary, and nurse, as he sank into eccentricity and prolonged silences.

Rudge survived Pound by twenty-four years, remaining in the small house in Venice she had shared with him. In her declining years, an ongoing difficult relationship with Mary, her only child, left her vulnerable to the attention of parties with ulterior motives, resulting in the sad situation described in John Berendt's The City of Falling Angels, in which Rudge could not account for how Pound's papers and letters in her possession had found their way to Yale University. Failing health eventually forced her to leave her beloved Venice and spend her final days with her daughter. Rudge died a month before her 101st birthday and is buried next to Pound in Venice's Isola di San Michele cemetery.

Olga Rudge and Ezra Pound

‘‘What Thou Lovest Well . . .’’

by Ann Conover

Yale University Press - Read entire book here:

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Hilda Doolittle was born into the Moravian community in Bethlehem in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley.[5] Her father, Charles Doolittle, was professor of astronomy at Lehigh University[6] and her mother, Helen (Wolle), was a Moravian with a strong interest in music. In 1896, Charles Doolittle was appointed Flower Professor of Astronomy at the University of Pennsylvania, and the family moved to a house in Upper Darby, an affluent Philadelphia suburb. She attended Philadelphia's Friends Central High School, at Fifteenth and Race streets, graduating in 1905. In 1901, she met and befriended Ezra Pound, who was to play a major role both in her private life and her emergence as a writer. In 1905, Pound presented her with a sheaf of love poems under the collective title Hilda's Book.[7]

That year, Doolittle attended Bryn Mawr College[8] to study Greek literature, but left after only three terms due to poor grades and the excuse of poor health. While at the college, she met the poets Marianne Moore and William Carlos Williams. Her first published writings, some stories for children, were published in The Comrade, a Philadelphia Presbyterian Church paper, between 1909 and 1913, mostly under the name Edith Gray. In 1907, she became engaged to Pound. Her father disapproved of Pound,[9] and by the time her father left for Europe in 1908, the engagement had been called off. Around this time, H.D. started a relationship with a young female art student at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Frances Josepha Gregg.[10] After spending part of 1910 living in Greenwich Village, she sailed to Europe with Gregg and Gregg's mother in 1911. In Europe, H.D. began a more serious career as a writer. Her relationship with Gregg cooled, and she met a writing enthusiast named Brigit Patmore with whom she became involved in an affair. Patmore introduced H.D. to another poet, Richard Aldington.

H.D. Imagiste

Soon after arriving in England, H.D. showed Pound some poems she had written. Pound had already begun to meet with other poets at the Eiffel Tower restaurant in Soho. He was impressed by the closeness of H.D. poems's to the ideas and principles he had been discussing with Aldington, with whom he had shared plans to reform contemporary poetry through free verse, the tanka and the tightness and conciseness of the haiku, and the removal of all unnecessary verbiage. In summer 1912, the three poets declared themselves the "three original Imagists", and set out their principles as:

1. Direct treatment of the 'thing' whether subjective or objective.
2. To use absolutely no word that does not contribute to the presentation.
3. As regarding rhythm: to compose in the sequence of the musical phrase, not in the sequence of a metronome.[11][12]

During a meeting with H.D. in a tea room near the British Museum that year, Pound appended the signature H.D. Imagiste to her poetry, creating a label that was to stick to the poet for most of her writing life.[13] However H.D. told different versions of this story at various times, and during her career published under a variety of pseudonyms.[14] That same year, Harriet Monroe started her Poetry magazine and asked Pound to act as foreign editor. In October, he submitted three poems each by H.D. and Aldington under the rubric Imagiste. Aldington's poems were in the November issue of Poetry and her poems "Hermes of the Ways," "Orchard," and "Epigram", in the January 1913 issue. Imagism as a movement was launched with H.D. as its prime exponent.

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Quote: Snow on his beard. But he had no beard, then. Snow blows down from pine branches, dry powder on the red gold. "I make five friends for my hair, for one for myself."

Or did he wear a soft hat, a cap pulled down over his eyes? A mask, a disguise? His eyes are his least impressive feature. But am I wrong? They seem small; color? Pebble-green? Surely not an insignificant feature. Gothic, as they call it, moonlight drifts through these etched trees. Cold?

Some sort of rigor mortis. I am frozen in this moment.

Perhaps I held it all my life, it is what they called my "imagery"; even now, they speak of "verse so chiselled as to seem lapidary," and they say, "She crystallizes--that is the right word." They say, "that is the right word." This moment must wait 50 years for the right word. Perhaps he had said it; perhaps in the frost of our mingled breath, the word was written. He was maybe nineteen, I was a year younger {1905--Ed.]. Immensely sophisticated, immensely superior, immensely rough-and-ready, a product not like any of the brothers and brothers' friends--and boys we danced with (and he danced badly). One would dance with him for what he might say. It didn't matter, with a lot of people around. Here, in the winter wood, it seemed significant.

It seemd at the same time infinitely trivial--was he showing off? Why must he say it? He said, "She said, 'Have you ever kissed a girl before?' I said, ' Never under the Rock of Gibraltar.'"

No need, then, to ask the question. First kisses? In the woods, in the winter--what did one expect? Not this. Electric, magnetic, they do not so much warm, they magnetize, vitalize. We need never go back. Lie down under the trees. Die here. We are past feeling cold; isn't that the first symptom of rigor mortis?

They used to say, "Run around, children; it's all right as long as you don't stop running." Had I stopped running?

Stop running for a moment, if you dare call him back.

There are very few left who know what he looked like then. There is a hint of a young, more robust Ignace Paderewski or even of the tawny Swinburne, if his frail body had ever reached maturity. But this young (already) iconoclast is rougher, tougher than the Polish poet or the Border bard. It is whispered among us that he "writes," but he has not spoken of this to me yet. "Where are you? Come back--," is shouted by the crowd above on the icy toboggan-run. "Shout back," I say and he gives a parody of a raucous yodel, then "Haie! Haie! Io," (you have read this in his poems). He seems instinctively to have snapped back into everyday existence. He drags me out of the shadows.

From "end to torment, A memoir of Ezra Pound" by H.D. (Hilda Doolittle)

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Hilda Doolittle (1886 – 1961)

Quote: Hilda declared in a letter to (William Carlos) Williams that she had decided to dedicate her life to Pound "who has been, beyond all others, torn and lonely--and ready to crucify himself yet more for the sake of helping all." The couple met at dances and parties and at musical evenings at the Pound home in Wyncote. Pound was writing his daily sonnet while Hilda, with less facility, was chiseling out a few lines every few days which she would timidly proffer for criticism.
from "Ezra Pound, the Solitary Volcano" - John Tytell, page 27

Quote: What is Money For?
Ezra Pound – 1935

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We will never see an end of ructions, we will never have a sane and steady administration until we gain an absolutely clear conception of money. I mean an absolutely not an approximately clear conception.

I can, if you like, go back to paper money issued in China in or about A.D. 840, but we are concerned with the vagaries of the Western World. FIRST, Paterson, the founder of the Bank of England, told his shareholders that they would profit because “the bank hath profit on the interest of all the moneys which it creates out of nothing.” What then is this “money” the banker can create out of nothing”?

Let us be quite clear. Money is a measured title or claim. That is its basic difference from unmeasured claims, such as a man’s right to take all you’ve got under war-time requisition, or as an invader or thief just taking it all. Money is a measure which the taker hands over when be acquires the goods he takes. And no further formality need occur during the transfer, though sometimes a receipt is given. The idea of justice inheres in ideas of measure, and money is a measure of value.


Money is valid when people recognise it as a claim and hand over goods or do work up to the value printed on the face of the ticket, whether it is made of metal or paper. Money is a general sort of ticket which is its only difference from a railway or theatre ticket. If this statement seems childish let the reader think for a moment about different kinds of tickets.

A railway ticket is a measured ticket. A ticket from London to Brighton differs from one for London to Edinburgh. Both are measured, but in miles that always stay the same length. A money ticket, under a corrupt system, wobbles. For a long time the public has trusted people whose measure was shifty.

Another angle. Theatre tickets are timed. You would probably not accept a ticket for Row H, Seat 27, if it were not dated. When six people are entitled to the same seat at the same time the tickets are not particularly good. (Orage asked; Would you call it inflation to print tickets for every seat in the house?) You will hear money called “a medium of exchange,” which means that it can circulate freely, as a measure of goods and services against one another, from hand to hand.


We will have defined money properly when we have stated what it is in words that cannot be applied to anything else and when there is nothing about the essential nature of money that is omitted from our definition.

When Aristotle calls money “a guarantee of future exchange” that merely means that it is an undated ticket, that will be good when we want to use it. Tickets have sometimes stayed good for a century. When we do not hand over money at once for goods or services received we are said to have “credit”. The “credit” is the other man’s belief that we can and will some time hand over the money or something measured by money.

Most men have been so intent on the individual piece of money, as a measure, that they have forgotten its purpose, and they have got into inextricable muddles and confusions regarding the total amount of money in a country. A perfectly good hammer is useless to pick your teeth with. If you don’t know what money is FOR, you will get into a muddle when using it, and still more will a government get into a mess in its “monetary policy”.
Statally speaking, that is from the point of view of a man or party that wants to govern justly, a piece of money is a ticket, the country’s money is a mass of tickets for getting the country’s food and goods justly distributed. The job for a man today who is trying to write a pamphlet on money is not to say something new, it is not to think up something or prove a theory, it is SIMPLY to make a clear statement about things that have been known for 200, and often for 2,000 years. You have got to know what money is FOR.


If you think it is a mantrap or a means of bleeding the public, you will admire the banking system as run by the Rothschilds and international bankers. If you think it is a means of sweating profits out of the public, you will admire the stock exchange. Hence ultimately for the sake of keeping your ideas in order you will need a few principles.

THE AIM of a sane and decent economic system is to fix things so that decent people can eat, have clothes and houses up to the limit of available goods.


Take money in such a system as a means of exchange, and then realise that to be a just means of exchange it must be measured.

What are you going to use to measure the value of anything? An egg is an egg. You can eat it (until it goes bad). Eggs are not all the same size, but they might serve among primitive people as an approximate measure.*

Unterguggenberger, the Austrian monetary reformer, used WORK as a measure, “Arbeitswert,” 10 schillings’ worth of work. That was O.K. in a mountain valley where everyone could do pretty much the same kind of work in the fields. Charlemagne had a grain measure, so many pecks of barley, wheat or rye worth a DENAR, or put it the other way on. The just price of barley was so much the peck.

In 796 A.D. it was 2 denars. And in 808 A.D. it was 3 denars. That means that the farmer got more denars for the Same quantity of barley. And let us hope he could buy more other goods with those denars. Unfortunately the worth of all things depends on whether there is a real scarcity, enough or more than can be used at a given time. A few eggs are worth a great deal to a hungry man on a raft. Wheat is worth MORE in terms of serge in some seasons than in others. So is gold, so is platinum. A single commodity (even gold) base for money is not satisfactory.

STATE AUTHORITY behind the printed note Is the best means of establishing a JUST and HONEST currency. The Chinese grasped that over 1,000 years ago, as we can see from the Tang STATE (not Bank) NOTE. SOVEREIGNTY inheres in the right to ISSUE money (tickets) and to determine the value thereof.

American interests HIDE the most vital clause in our** constitution. The American government hasn’t, they say, the right to fix prices. BUT IT HAS THE RIGHT TO DETERMINE THE VALUE OF MONEY and this right is vested in Congress.

This is a mere difference in legal formalities and verbal arrangements. The U.S. Government has the right to say “a dollar is one wheat-bushel thick, it is one serge-foot long, it is ten gallons of petrol wide.” Hence the U.S. Government could establish the JUST PRICE, and a just price system.


Out of barter grew the canonist doctrine of the just price, and a thousands years’ thought from St. Ambrose to St. Antonino of Florence, as to HOW to determine the just price. Both the Douglas social crediters and modern Catholics POSTULATE the JUST PRICE as a necessary part of their Systems. The valid complaint against Douglas is that be didn’t invent and set up machinery for ENFORCING the just price. A priest recently reported to me that the English distributists had about got round to realising that they had no mechanism for instituting and enforcing just price.

Only the STATE can effectively fix the JUST PRICE of any commodity by means of state-controlled pools of raw products and the restoration of guild organisation in industry.


Having determined the size of your dollar, or half-crown or shilling, your Government’s next job is to see that TICKETS are properly printed and that they get to the right people.

The right people are all the people who’ve not engaged in CRIME, and crime for the duration of this pamphlet means among other things CHEATING the rest of the citizens through the money racket. In the United States and England there is NOT enough money. There are not enough tickets moving about among the WHOLE people to BUY what they need — EVEN when the goods are there on the counter or going to rot on the wharves.

When the total nation hasn’t or cannot obtain enough food for its people, that nation is poor. When enough food exists and people cannot get it by honest labour, the state is rotten, and no effort of language will say how rotten it is. But for a banker or professor to tell you that the country cannot do this, that or the other because it lacks money is as black and foetid a lie, as grovelling and imbecile, as it would be to say it cannot build roads because it has no kilometres. (I didn’t invent that phrase, but it is too good to leave idle.) Roosevelt and his professors were on the right line with their commodity dollar, BUT they hooeyed and smoke-screened and dodged the problem of having ENOUGH TICKETS to serve the whole people, and of keeping those tickets MOVING.

It is the business of the STATE to see that there is enough money in the hands of the WHOLE people, and in adequately rapid EXCHANGE, to effect distribution or all wealth produced and produceable. Until every member of the nation eats three times a day and has shelter and clothing, a nation is either lazy or unhealthy. If this occurs in a rich state the state’s riches are not fully employed.

All value comes from labour. Wheat from ploughing, chestnuts from being picked up. BUT a lot of WORK has been done by men (mostly inventors, well-diggers, constructors of factory plant, etc.) now DEAD, and who therefore cannot eat and wear clothes.


In respect of this legacy of mechanical efficiency and scientific advance we have at our disposal a large volume of SOCIAL CREDIT, which can he distributed to the people as a bonus over and above their wage packet. Douglas proposed to bring up the TOTAL purchasing power of the whole people by a per capita issue of tickets PROPORTIONAL to available goods. In England and U.S. today available and desired goods remain unbought because the total purchasing power (i.e., total sum of tickets) is inadequate. Mussolini and Hitler wasted very little time PROPOSING. They started and DO distribute BOTH tickets and actual goods on various graduated scales according to the virtues and activities of Italians and Germans. Douglas may object that this is not “democratic” (that is egalitarian) BUT for the monetary scientist or economist the result is the same. The goods are getting distributed.

There is a slightly different angle in the way these different men look on justice. They all agree that deficiency in a nation’s total purchasing power must be made up. Ten or more years ago I said, that Mussolini had achieved more than Douglas, because Douglas has presented his ideas as a greed system, not as a will system.

Both Systems, Fascist and Douglasite, differ as the day from night from the degradation of the DOLE, from the infamy of the British system wherein men who are out of jobs are paid money taken from men who do work, and where the out-of-works are rendered progressively UNFIT to work or to enjoy the sensations of living. Not only are they a drag on workers, but they are made a drag on all people who are trying to maintain a decent standard of living. The whole scale of values is defiled. Every year sees less sense of SOCIAL VALUE; less sense of having people lead lives which do not harm others; of lives in which some measure and prudence is observed.

There is nothing new in creating money to distribute wealth. If you don’t believe the Emperor Tching Tang issued the first national dividend in B.C. 1766 you can call it something else. It may have been an emergency dole, but the story will at least clear up one muddle. The emperor opened a copper mine and issued round coins with square holes and gave them to the poor “and this money enabled them to buy grain from the rich,” but it had no effect on the general shortage of grain.

That story is 3,000 years old, but it helps one to understand what money is and what it can do. For the purpose of good government it is a ticket for the orderly distribution of WHAT IS AVAILABLE. It may even be an incentive to grow or fabricate more grain or goods, that is to attain abundance. But it is NOT in itself abundance.


The term inflation is used as a bogey to scare people away from any expansion of money at all. Real INFLATION only begins when you issue MONEY (measured claims) against goods or services that are undeliverable (assignats of the French Revolution issued against state lands) or issue them in excess of those WANTED. That amounts to saying: two or more tickets for the same seat at the same time, or tickets in London for a theatre performance tonight in Bombay, or for a dud show.

Money can be expended as long as each measured claim can be honoured by the producers and distributors of the nation in the goods and services required by the public, when and where they want them. INFLATION is one danger; STAGNATION is another.


[Silvio] Gesell, the South American monetary reformer, saw the danger of money being hoarded and proposed to deal with it by the issue of “stamp scrip.” This should be a government note requiring the bearer to affix a stamp worth up to 1% of its face value on the first day of every month. Unless the note carries its proper complement or monthly stamps it is not valid.

This is a form of TAX on money and in the case of British currency might take the form of 1/2d or 1d per month on a ten shilling note and 1d or 2d on a pound. There are any number of possible taxes, but Gesell’s kind of tax can only fall on a man who has, in his pocket, at the moment the tax falls due, 100-times, at least, the amount of the tax.

Gesell’s kind of money provides a medium and measure of exchange which cannot be hoarded with impunity. It will always keep moving. Bankers could NOT lock it up in their cellars and charge the public for letting it out. It has also the additional benefit of placing sellers of perishable goods at less of a disadvantage in negotiating with owners of theoretically imperishable money. I am particularly keen on Gesell, because once people have used stamp scrip they HAVE a clear idea about money, they understand tickets better than men who haven’t used stamp scrip. I am no more anxious than anyone else to use a new kind of stamp, but I maintain that the public is NOT too stupid to use postage stamps and that there is no gain in pretending that they are too stupid to understand money.

I don’t say you have to use Gesell’s method. But once you understand WHY he wanted it you will not be fleeced by bank sharks and “monetary authorities” WITHOUT KNOWING HOW you are being fleeced. That is WHY Gesell is so useful as a school teacher. He proposed a very simple way of keeping his tickets moving.


In 1816 Thomas Jefferson made a basic statement that has NOT been properly digested, let alone brought into perspective with various “modern proposals” for special improvements of the present damned and destructive “system” or money racket. The reader had better FRAME Jefferson’s statement:-

” And if the national bills issued be bottomed (as is indispensable) on pledges of specific taxes for their redemption within certain and moderate epochs, and be of proper denominations for circulation, no interest on them would be necessary or just, because they would answer to every one of the purposes of metallic money withdrawn and replaced by them.” Jefferson to Crawford, 1816.

Jefferson’s formula is SOLID. If the state emits ENOUGH money for valid and justifiable expenses and keeps it moving, circulating, going out the front door and coming in at the tax window, the nation will not suffer stagnation. The issue of HONEST MONEY is a service and when the state performs this service the state has a right to a just recompense, which differs from nearly all known forms of tax.

I say “when the state issues it,” because when states are weak or incompetent or their issue inadequate, individuals and congeries of men or localities HAVE quite properly taken over this activity (or have retained it from pre-statal eras), and it is better, it is in fact necessary, that the function of the measure of exchange should be carried on than that it stop or break down altogether.

On the other hand a nation whose measure of exchange is at the mercy of forces OUTSIDE the nation, is a nation in peril, it is a nation without national sovereignty. It is a nation of incompetent idiots drifting to ruin. Let us repeat. Sovereignty inheres in the right to ISSUE measured claims to wealth, that is MONEY.


No part or function of government should be under closer surveillance, and in no part or cranny of government should higher moral criteria be ASSURED. STATAL MONEY based upon national wealth must replace GOLD manipulated by international usurers. The sane order in founding a dynasty or reorganising a government is:-

FIRST to get the results, that is to see that the people are fed and housed. THEN so to regulate the mechanism of distribution (monetary system or whatever) that it will not fall into decay and be pilfered.

For example J. Q. Adams, one of the American founders, had some nice socialist or statal ideas about reserving the national wealth for educational and “higher purposes”. His proposals were UNTIMELY. Jackson opened the land; settlers could go and take quite a bit each, free and gratis. It was timely and useful. BUT no provision was made to prevent the settlers transferring this land WHEN THEY HAD NO FURTHER USE FOR IT and didn’t want to work it themselves. Hence the U.S. land has fallen into great ownership. The same danger applies to monetary systems as to land settlement. Set up a perfect and just money system and in three days rascals, the bastards with mercantilist and monopolist mentality, will start thinking up some wheeze to cheat the people. The concessions-hunter will sprout in some new form as long as dung stinks and humanity produces mental abortions. John Adams early saw that stockjobbers would replace fat country small squire tyrants.

In the 1860s one of the Rothschilds was kind enough to admit that the banking system was contrary to public interest, and that was before the shadow of Hitler’s jails had fallen ACROSS the family fortunes. It is this generation’s job to do what was left undone by the early democrats. The guild system, endowing the people by occupation and vocation with corporate powers, gives them the means to protect themselves for all time from the money power.

If you don’t like the guild idea, go get results with some other, but don’t lose your head and forget what clean men are driving at. And don’t lie to yourselves and mistake a plough for a mortgage and vice versa. It is useless to talk of economics or to listen to talk about economics or to read books on the subject until both reader and writer know what they mean by the half-dozen simplest and most necessary terms most frequently used.


The first thing for a man to think of when proposing an economic system is; WHAT IS IT FOR? And the answer is: to make sure that the whole people shall be able to eat (in a healthy manner), to be housed (decently) and be clothed (in a way adequate to the climate). Another form of that statement is Mussolini’s:-


The Left claim that private ownership has destroyed this true purpose of an economic system, Let us see how OWNERSHIP was defined, at the beginning of a capitalist era during the French Revolution.

“OWNERSHIP is the right which every citizen has to enjoy and dispose of the portion of goods guaranteed him by the law. “The right of ownership is limited, as are all other rights by the obligation to respect the rights of others. It cannot be prejudicial to the safety, nor to the liberty nor to the existence, nor to the ownership of other men like ourselves. Every possession, every traffic, which violates this principle is illicit and immoral.” – Robespierre.


The perspective of the damned XIXth century shows little else than the violation of these principles by demoliberal usuriocracy. The doctrine of Capital, in short, has shown itself as little else than the idea that unprincipled thieves and antisocial groups should be allowed to gnaw into the rights of ownership. This tendency “to gnaw into” has been recognised and stigmatised from the time of the laws of Moses and he called it neschek. And nothing differs more from this gnawing or corrosive than the right to share out the fruits of a common co-operative labour.

Indeed USURY has become the dominant force in the modern world. “Moreover, imperialism is an immense accumulation of money capital in a few countries, which, as we have seen, amounts to 4 or 5 thousand million pounds sterling in securities. Hence the extraordinary growth of a class, or rather a Stratum, of rentiers, i.e, persons who live by “clipping coupons” who take absolutely no part in any enterprise, and whose profession is idleness. The exportation of capital, one of the most essential economic bases of imperialism, still further isolates this rentier stratum from production, and sets the seal of parasitism on the whole country living on the exploitation of the labour of several overseas countries and colonies.” V. I. Lenin, quoting Hobson in “Imperialism, the highest stage of Capitalism.”

Very well! That is from Lenin. But you could quote the same substance from Hitler, who is a Nazi (note the paragraph from “Mein Kampf magnificently isolated by Wyndham Lewis in his “Hitler” – “The struggle against international finance and loan capital has become the most important point in the National Socialist programme; the struggle of the German nation for its independence and freedom.”

You could quote it from Mussolini, a Fascist, or from C. H. Douglas, who calls himself a democrat and his followers the only true democrats. You could quote it from McNair Wilson who is a Christian Monarchy man. You could quote it from a dozen camps which have no suspicion they are quoting Lenin. The only people who do not seem to have read and digested this essay of his are the British Labour Party and various groups of professing communists throughout the Occident.

Some facts are now known above parties, some perceptions are the common heritage of all men of good will and only the Jewspapers and worse than Jewspapers, try now to obscure them. Among the worse than Jewspapers we must list the hired professors who misteach new
generations of young, who lie for hire and who continue to lie from sheer sloth and inertia and from dog-like contempt for the wellbeing of all mankind. At this point, and to prevent the dragging of red herrings, I wish to distinguish between prejudice against the Jew as such and the suggestion that the Jew should face his own problem.

Does he in his individual case wish to observe the law of Moses? Does he propose to continue to rob other men by usury mechanism while wishing to be considered a “neighbour”? This is the sort or double-standard which a befouled English delegation tried to enforce via the corrupt League of Nations (frontage and face wash for the worse international corruption at Basel).

USURY is the cancer of the world, which only the surgeon’s knife of Fascism can cut out of the life of the nations. (Some quotes and observations.)


1. “The banking business is declared a state monopoly,” Lenin, Kryienko, Podvoisky, Gorbunov. Which, of course, means “all power” to the state.

2. “Discipline the economic forces and equate them to the needs of the nation,” Mussolini, Consegna for the year XII.

3. “Problem of production solved, economists prodded on by the state should next solve the problem of distribution.” Ibid.

4. Rossoni, Italian minister, indicates the policy ofammassi, or assemblage of grain with possibilities of a totally different tax system in kind.

NOTE that extortion has often consisted in forcing men to pay in a substance or via a medium (money) which they have not and which they are forced to obtain at an unjust price.

5. Bankhead proposed Stamp Scrip in the U.S. Senate, possibly the only 100% honest monetary proposal made in U.S. legislature since American civilisation was destroyed by and after the Civil War (1861-5)

6. Daladier, whatever his errors, proposed Stamp Scrip in a French Radical Party assembly, possibly the only 100% honest monetary proposal made in that worm-eaten and miserable country since Neckar brought in his vermin, and since the Banque of France was riveted on the back of the people. These statements should be faced and either verified or disproved. A very great and slimy ignorance persists. American concerns hire the Lowest grade of journalists to obscure the public mind. Are we to suppose that neither employer nor writer know that wages are paid in money; that dividends are paid in money; that raw materials and finished products are bought with money?

As for prize lies there is no ascertainable limit from the Saturday Evening Post‘s “Kreuger is more than a financial titan” to the daily and hourly pronouncements of the British “statesmen” and press.


So far as I know no 100% honest monetary policy has been officially proposed in the British Parliament since the Bank of England was founded. Nor has any of the larger religious bodies in England come out for common monetary honesty. Your tax system is an infamy. The farm hand does not eat more because the paintings by Raeburn or Constable are taken out of the Manor House and put in the Jew dealer’s cellar under a black and iniquitous inheritance tax.

The obscuring of the sense of the NATURE of money has destroyed all these fine things USELESSLY. The dismantled Manor House that could be and ought to show a model of how to live, is made a skeleton for NO PURPOSE. If any hedger or ditcher got a half ounce more beefsteak BECAUSE the Manor House library was sold off and its pictures put up to auction, there might be some justification in taxes. But there is NO justification in taxes as now suffered in Britain.


” In Mississippi the average cotton farmer makes four bales of cotton a year worth, at the present market, 42.00 dollars a bale. This is 170 dollars for a year’s work. A daughter of this family averaging 12 dollars a week in a nearby industrial plant earns 624 dollars for a year’s work, over three times the income from the farm.” –Thus the “Commonwealth College Fortnightly” of Mena, Arkansas. March 1st, 1938. Hence the claims that “money isn’t all” and that “it is not exclusively a money problem”.

You could have a just and stable coinage; measured by eggs, by work or by a logarithmic price index, and that FARMER could STILL get only 42.50 dollars per bale and be unable to grow more cotton per acre. Will this statement content my Bolshevik friends in Arkansas and the gents who think I am concerned SOLELY with money?

Ezra Pound – 1935


* Oxen have been so used by Zulus and other African tribes. – Ed.

** Mr. Ezra Pound is an American. – Ed.
01-25-2012, 06:58 AM, (This post was last modified: 04-24-2012, 03:59 PM by Negentropic.)
RE: What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ?
Dorothy Shakespear (14 September 1886 – 8 December 1973) was the wife of the poet Ezra Pound, the daughter of novelist Olivia Shakespear and an artist. She participated in the Vorticism movement, and had her artwork published in the literary magazine BLAST.

Dorothy met Ezra Pound in 1909; after a long courtship the two were married 1914. The couple moved to Paris in 1920, living there until 1924, when they moved to Rapallo, Italy. Dorothy stayed married to Pound in spite of his long-lasting affair with Olga Rudge whom he met in Paris in the early 1920s. In 1926 Dorothy gave birth to her son Omar Pound, whom she sent to England to be raised by her mother. By the 1930s, she became financially independent, the result of various family bequests, but lost much of her money following Pound's advice to invest in Benito Mussolini's fascist regime.

Toward the end of World War II, Dorothy and Pound were evacuated from their home in Rapallo, and for a period she, Pound and Rudge lived together in Rudge's home. After the war, when Pound had been arrested for treason and incarcerated on grounds of insanity in Washington, D.C., she moved there to be visit him regularly, assumed control of his estate, and stayed with him until his release. They returned to Italy in 1958; in the 1960s she moved to London, leaving her husband to live out the last decade of his life with Olga Rudge.

[Image: 240px-DorothyPound.jpg]

Early years

Dorothy's mother, Olivia Shakespear (b. 17 March 1863), came from a British Indian Army family on her father and mother's side. Olivia was born on the Isle of Wight, lived in Sussex as a child before moving to London in 1877 where she and her sister, Florence, were raised to enjoy a life of leisure.[1] Dorothy's father, Henry Hope Shakespear (b. 1849), traced his family to 17th-century East London rope makers and, like his wife, came from a military family. Educated at Harrow, he went on to study law, became a barrister and in 1875 joined a law practice. He and Olivia were married in 1885; Dorothy, the couple's only child, was born nine months later.[2] By the late 1880s, Dorothy's mother was active in London literary circles, started writing and by 1894 had published two novels.[3]

From her father, Dorothy learned to paint, accompanying him on regularly scheduled painting excursions in the country.[4] Pound biographer Wilhelm writes as "bright, pert, pretty English girl with a winning smile although some people found her cold".[5] She was educated at Hampshire Boarding School and at a finishing school in Geneva, after which she lived at home, spending her time in activities such as water-colour painting, reading, letter writing, and accompanying her mother on social visits. Pound biographer Humphrey Carpenter writes she had little romance in her life until she met Ezra Pound.[6]


Dorothy met Pound at her own home on 16 February 1909 when her mother, who recently met the young American poet at a friend's salon in Kensington, invited him to tea.[7] Although Olivia was more than 20 years older than Pound, she was a beautiful woman, and influential in London literary society, to whom Pound may have been attracted. But it was Dorothy, a year younger than Pound, who was struck by his presence, writing in her diary on the very day she met him:

"Listen to it—Ezra! Ezra! And a third time—Ezra! He has a wonderful, beautiful face, a high forehead, prominent over the eyes; a long delicate nose, with little, red, nostrils; a strange mouth, never still & quite elusive; a square chin, slightly cleft in the middle—the whole face pale; the eyes grey-blue; the hair golden-brown, and curling in soft wavy crinkles. Large hands, with long, well-shaped fingers and beautiful nails.[8]"

Many years later she would tell Ezra Pound biographer Noel Stock that her memory of the visit "was very hazy, all she could remember was that it was winter and she sat on a low stool near the fire and listened".[9]

Dorothy's mother, Olivia Shakespear, introduced Pound to her daughter in 1909.

In late 1909 and early 1910, chaperoned by her mother, Dorothy attended Pound's lectures at the London Polytechnic Institute; in June 1910, mother and daughter went to Italy and joined him in Sirmione for a few weeks. Dorothy spent the time painting, becoming enthralled with Lake Garda, as was Pound, claiming it was the first time she had seen color.[10] At this time Olivia restricted contact between the two; days before Pound left for an extended stay in the US, Dorothy wrote to him in a letter she would abide: "In case I do not see you alone on Wednesday, I take it that during your 'exile' you have been forbidden to write to me? .... if you have promised—don't break your word—don't write to me!"[11] Olivia allowed Dorothy to write a thank you note when Pound's Canzoni were published—dedicated to Oliva and Dorothy—the only instance in which Dorothy was allowed direct contact with him. John Harwood, Olivia Sharkespear biographer, writes that Dorothy's lack of resistance seems extreme, even by Edwardian standards; however, he speculates that Olivia's motives were to keep Dorothy's behaviour controlled, whereas Pound's behaviour was ignored. Dorothy likely considered herself engaged to Pound after the Italian trip.[7]

The two remained unofficially engaged until 1914, with Dorothy adhering to social convention and waiting for her father's permission to marry.[12] In 1911 Pound returned from America and in October formally approached Dorothy's father asking permission to marry her. Pound told Shakespear he had a guaranteed annual income of ₤200 in addition to earnings from writing and Dorothy's own income of ₤150 a year. Shakespear refused on the grounds of insufficient income believing Pound overstated his potential to earn money writing poetry. At the same time, Hilda Doolitle arrived from America, believing herself to be engaged to Pound. Walter Rummel, with whom Pound was sharing a room while he waited for his old rooms at Church Walk to be vacated, told Hilda about Dorothy a few days before Pound asked permission to marry Dorothy. During that period Olivia invited Hilda to her home to meet her, and was concerned about the tension between Dorothy, Hilda and Pound, as well as her daughter's apparent obsession with Pound. Olivia continued to restrict contact between the two while Dorothy continued to treat the relationship as an engagement, despite short weekly or bi-weekly supervised visits in the family drawing room.[13]

Throughout the nearly five-year-long courtship, Dorothy and Pound corresponded regularly, fillng their letters with gossip about mutual acquaintances such as T.E. Hulme, Violent Hunt, Walter Rummel, Florence Farr, and Henri Gaudier-Brzeska; additionally in their letters they shared trivial incidents, family information, and showed affection for one-another. They were separated for long periods each year when the Shakespear family visited friends and extended family (mostly members of the Tucker family) in the country, returning to London only for a few months in the spring and autumn—customary for many Victorian families. Generally young women of the period were expected to indulge in activities such as painting, embroidery and music while waiting for marriage. Dorothy, however, through the influence of her mother, was well-read (and quite capable of conversing with Pound who had multiple degrees), knowledgeable in music, and a talented artist.[14] She became a skilled artist and during the vorticist period was capable of conversing easily with artists such as Wyndham Lewis whom she met at her mother's salon.[15]

Olivia realised her 27-year-old daughter was determined to marry Pound and in 1914 allowed the two to marry. At that time Pound earned less than he had in 1911 at the time of his first proposal.[16]


On 20 April 1914, Dorothy married Pound despite her father's opposition who relented when the couple agreed to a church rather than a civil ceremony.[17] The marriage ceremony took place in the morning with six guests in attendance; official witnesses were the bride's father and her uncle Henry Tucker.[18] As a wedding present Olivia gave them two circus drawings by Pablo Picasso.[19]

Dorothy and Pound moved into an apartment at 5 Holland Place, with Hilda Doolittle, recently married to Richard Aldington, living in the adjacent apartment.[20] Hilda was shocked and hurt when Pound married Dorothy, and even more shocked to find he rented the apartment opposite at Holland Place. She and Dorothy were not on friendly terms, with Hilda writing of her, "she is unbearably critical and never has been known to make a warm friend with a man or woman. She loathes (she says) children! However that may be a little pose. She is a bit addictive to little mannerisms. I don't think she can be poignantly sensitive or she would never have stuck Ezra". When Dorothy came to in the small apartment she refused to cook—ever. In fact, she never cooked until she was to forced to during World War II.[21] Pound cooked in the larger room and worked in a small better-lit room. He made furniture for the apartment where they stayed until 1919.[18]

Although Dorothy and Ezra planned to honeymoon in Spain that September, the outbreak of World War I forced them to postpone. Instead they lived with W.B. Yeats at Stone Cottage for the winter, where Pound worked on proofs for the second issue of BLAST magazine.[22] Of Dorothy, Yeats wrote, "she looks as if her face were made out of Dresden china. I look at her in perpetual wonder. It is hard to believe she is real; yet she spends all her daylight hours drawing the most monstrous cubist pictures."[23] Poet Iris Barry, writing in the 1930s about the Pounds during this period, describes Dorothy as, "With [Ezra] came Mrs. Pound, carrying herself delicately with the air, always of a young Victorian lady out skating, and a profile as clear and lovely as that of a porcelain Kuan-yin".[24]

From her father she learned landscape art but by 1913 her art showed influences of Japanese prints. Additionally, she was influenced by exposure to artists such as Wyndham Lewis and Henri Gaudier-Brzeska and by 1914 had assimilated her own abstract Vorticist style. In 1915, she designed the cover-art for her husband's volume of poetry, Ripostes. Her work was simply signed as 'D.S.' and never exhibited.[23] Despite her fragile demeanor, when BLAST was published, Dorothy carried the brightly coloured avant-garde magazine conspicuously along Tottenham Court Road in an effort to promote the publication.[25] Additionally, she designed for her husband Chinese characters to add to his manuscripts.[26]

Paris and Italy

Dorothy and Pound moved to Paris in 1920 where they first lived in a hotel until renting a studio at 70 bis rue de Notre Dame des Champs, a small street near the Dôme Café. With a letter of introduction from Sherwood Anderson, Hemingway secured an invitation to tea for himself and his wife Hadley, who found Dorothy's manners to be intimidating, and he considered their apartment to be as "poor as Gertrude Stein's studio was rich".[27] Nonetheless they forged a firm friendship that lasted many years,[28] with Dorothy turning to Hemingway for help in the early 1950s, during Pound's incarceration at St. Elizabeths.[29]

During this period Pound edited and Dorothy worked as business manager for the four volume literary magazine, The Exile, featuring works by Pound himself, Hemingway, and others.[28] In 1923, Pound met classical violinist Olga Rudge, with whom he fell in love and kept as his mistress until his death.[30]

In 1924 Dorothy and Pound left Paris for Italy to allow Ezra time to recuperate after suffering from appendicitis. They stayed in Rapallo briefly, moving on to Sicily, and then returning to settle in Rapallo in January 1925.[31] On 9 July 1925 Pound's mistress Olga gave birth to their child Mary, in the Italian Tyrol.[32] Dorothy was separated from Pound for much of that year and the next: she joined her mother in Siena in the autumn; and visited Egypt from December 1925 to March 1926, returning home pregnant.[33] Visiting Paris in June for the opening of Pound's opera Le Testament de Villon, Dorothy decided to stay there for the child to be born at the American Hospital. Pound was away at the time of the birth; Dorothy was brought by Hemingway to the hospital to the hospital where Omar Pound was born in the afternoon of 10 September 1926.[33] A year and half later he was sent to London to be raised by Olivia.[34]

In 1938 Olivia died, leaving Dorothy a substantial income. In 1931 Olivia doubled Dorothy's income, who by that time had additional income in the form of various family bequests and dividends from investments. With her husband earning as little as ₤50 annually, the Pounds lived on Dorothy's income. Olivia set up a stock account for her which was soon depleted because she followed Pound's advice to invest in Italian stock. She inherited ₤16,000 from her mother, but during the war the money was inaccessible with assets from England prohibited from being sent to an Axis country. As a result, during the war years the couple relied solely on Pound's income, for the first time since their marriage.[35]

[Image: 5576087632_e198ce4116_z.jpg]

In 1941 Pound tried on two separate occasions to leave Italy with Dorothy: on the first he was denied passage on by plane,[36] the second time they were refused on a diplomatic train out of the country.[37] In 1944 Pound and Dorothy were again evacuated (during World War they had been evacuated from Stone Cottage one winter),[38] from their home for being too near the coast. Pound wanted Dorothy to stay in Rapallo and care for his mother, Isabel, while he joined Olga. Dorothy insisted, however, on staying with her husband—for a year the three lived together. Olga took a job in an Ursuline school; Dorothy who had not learned Italian after almost two decades in the country was forced to learn to shop and finally how to cook.[39]

Later years

On 25 November 1945, Pound was arraigned in Washington D.C. on charges of treason. The list of charges included broadcasting for the enemy, attempting to persuade American citizens to undermine government support for the war, and strengthening morale in Italy against the United States. Pound was unwell at the reading and remanded to a Washington D.C. hospital where he underwent psychiatric evaluation. A week later he was admitted to St. Elizabeths hospital and assigned to a lunatic ward until February 1947. Unable to renew her passport, Dorothy only arrived in June, when her 'legally incompetent' husband was placed in her charge. She was allowed infrequent visits until his move to Chestnut Ward the following year—the result of an appeal she initiated—after which she spent several hours with him each day.[40] Upon his release twelve years later, they returned to Italy. According to Wilhelm, Dorothy was too frail to continue tending her husband, and Olga took over. From 1962 she lived with her in Sant'Ambrogio.[41

[Image: Olivia_Shakespear.png]

Olivia Shakespear, (born Olivia Tucker; 17 March 1863 – 3 October 1938), was a British novelist, playwright, and patron of the arts. She wrote six books that are described as "marriage problem" novels. Her works sold poorly, sometimes only a few hundred copies. Her last novel, Uncle Hilary, is considered her best. She wrote two plays in collaboration with Florence Farr.

Olivia was the daughter of a retired Adjutant General, and had little formal education. She was well-read however, and developed a love of literature. In 1885 she married London barrister Henry Hope Shakespear, and in 1886 gave birth to their only child, Dorothy. In 1894 her literary interests led to a friendship with William Butler Yeats that became physically intimate in 1896. For Yeats, Olivia was willing to lose her daughter, financial security, social standing, and the goodwill of her family. Although her husband had grounds to sue and destroy Yeats' reputation, her best hope against complete ruin was Shakespear's strong dislike of public scenes. Then Yeats lost his nerve again, suggesting instead each seek advice from a friend (a "sponsor"). He probably chose Florence Farr to be his sponsor while Olivia chose Valentine Fox—Harwood speculates that the sponsors advised the two to go ahead with the affair, perhaps to Yeats' discomfort.[20] On 15 July 1895, Yeats and Olivia travelled to Kent to visit Valentine Fox; the trip Harwood says "would have been, emotionally speaking a highly charged outing".[23] Of the railway trip, Yeats wrote in his memoirs, "when on our first railway journey together—we were to spend the day at Kent—she gave the long passionate kiss of love, I was startled & a little shocked".[22] They went on to share more passionate kisses in art galleries and at her home.[1]

Following their consummation he declared that they "had many days of happiness" to come,[1] but the affair ended in 1897. They nevertheless remained life-long friends and corresponded frequently. Yeats went on to marry Georgie Hyde-Lees, Olivia's step-niece and Dorothy's best friend.

Olivia began hosting a weekly salon frequented by Ezra Pound and other modernist writers and artists in 1909, and became influential in London literary society. Dorothy Shakespear married Pound in 1914, despite the less-than-enthusiastic blessing of her parents. After their marriage, Pound would use funds received from Olivia to support T.S. Eliot and James Joyce. When Dorothy gave birth to a son, Omar Pound, in France in 1926, Olivia assumed guardianship of the boy. He lived with Olivia until her death on 3 October 1938.
05-26-2012, 11:29 PM, (This post was last modified: 10-20-2012, 02:18 AM by Negentropic.)
RE: What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ?
The Tree by Ezra Pound

I stood still and was a tree amid the wood,
Knowing the truth of things unseen before;
Of Daphne and the laurel bow
And that god-feasting couple old
that grew elm-oak amid the wold.
'Twas not until the gods had been
Kindly entreated, and been brought within
Unto the hearth of their heart's home
That they might do this wonder thing;
Nathless I have been a tree amid the wood
And many a new thing understood
That was rank folly to my head before.

In a note on the poem Pound commented on the formative embodiments of mythmaking that are basic to the imaginative process leading to the poem, and his comments seem to be a touchstone for much of his subsequent poetry:

"The first myths arose when a man walked into "nonsense," that is to say, when some very vivid and undeniable adventure befell him, and he told someone else who called him a liar. Thereupon, after bitter experience, perceiving that no one could understand what he meant when he said that he 'turned into a tree,' he made a myth--a work of art, that is--an impersonal or objective story woven out of his own emotion, as the nearest equation that he was capable of putting into words. The story, perhaps, then gave rise to a weaker copy of his emotion in others, until there arose a cult, a company of people who could understand each other's nonsense about gods." -- Ezra Pound

"Energy depends on one's ability to make a vortex-genius meme at the cross-conflicts of art and ideology." -- Ezra Pound

Quote: Dorothy returned to Paris in September and together with her husband encountered an American sculptor, Nancy Cox-McCormack. An acquaintance of Harriet Monroe's in Chicago, McCormack knew of Pound by reputation and had read some of his work in Poetry. The meeting was spontaneous and McCormack's memory of it is instructive:

"He came along accompanied by a slimly tailored, commanding young woman. Her beautiful curly chestnut hair binding a broad brow above strikingly large serious dark eyes and fine features reminded me of paintable English beauties. Her entire personality bespoke the quality of an English lady. I was never more astonished and pleased than when this extraordinary couple turned into the restaurant where I sat. They came directly towards me, asking permission to sit at my table. Once seated, E.P. eventually introduced himself and then presented his wife. He told me later that I had looked too much like news from the USA to let me get away"

According to McCormack, Pound seemed to address his wife in all his conversation "as if he were in the habit of crystalizing his thinking through the intellectual channels of their mutual understanding." Pound brought Nancy McCormack to meet Picabia, then to Brancusi's studio, and then to see Zadkine, who was carving agonized shapes in tree trunks. McCormack did a plaster "death mask" of Pound's face which she then photographed. Pound decided to mail a copy to the literary critic of the Chicago Tribune, Fanny Butcher, who had been less than kind to him, as notice of his own demise.

from "Ezra Pound, the Solitary Volcano - John Tytell" page 171

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Brancusi: Sleep 1906

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Nancy Cox-McCormack working on a bust of Benito Mussolini, 1923

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BLAST was the short-lived literary magazine of the Vorticist movement in Britain. Two editions were published: the first on 2 July 1914 (dated 20 June 1914, but publication was delayed)[1][2] and the second a year later on 15 July 1915. Both editions were written primarily by Wyndham Lewis, and was published with uncharacteristic and shockingly bright pink cover art, referred to by Ezra Pound as the "great MAGENTA cover'd opusculus".[3] The magazine is emblematic of the modern art movement in England,[4] and recognised as a seminal text of pre-war 20th-century modernism.[5][6]

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The Manifesto

The first section of Wyndham Lewis' Manifesto, Blast 1, 1914
The manifesto is primarily a long list of things to be 'Blessed' or 'Blasted'. It starts:

1. Beyond Action and Reaction we would establish ourselves.

2. We start from opposite statements of a chosen world. Set up violent structure of adolescent clearness between two extremes.

3. We discharge ourselves on both sides.

4. We fight first on one side, then on the other, but always for the SAME cause, which is neither side or both sides and ours.

5. Mercenaries were always the best troops.

6. We are primitive Mercenaries in the Modern World.

7. Our Cause is NO-MAN'S.

8. We set Humour at Humour's throat. Stir up Civil War among peaceful apes.

9. We only want Humour if it has fought like Tragedy.

10. We only want Tragedy if it can clench its side-muscles like hands on its belly, and bring to the surface a laugh like a bomb.

[Blast 1] included the now famous pages of subjects either 'Blasted' or 'Blessed' depending on how they were seen by the fledgling Vorticists. 'Blast' pages generally had a go at [Roger] Fry, the Bloomsbury set, the average art critic, and Putney (for some reason). Amongst those being Blessed are hairdressers and mariners. The latter two professions were celebrated because they both battle against elemental nature. Tonks, the Slade drawing tutor has the unique honour of being both 'Blessed' and 'Blasted'. —Vorticism Online[14]

The first edition also contained many illustrations in the Vorticist style by Jacob Epstein, Lewis and others.

The second edition, published on 20 July 1915, contained a short play by Ezra Pound and T. S. Eliot's poems Preludes and Rhapsody on a Windy Night. Another article by Gaudier-Brzeska entitled Vortex (written from the Trenches) further described the vorticist aesthetic. It was written whilst Gaudier-Brzeska was fighting in the First World War, a few weeks before he was killed at Verdun.

"NO, HELL NO! ! ! Rebel Art Centre, was serious VORT centre, supported by the pure in heart.
There the emissaries of Moscow came to gaze, and having listened to Ez-vort
said sadly:
BUTTT ! ! you are
in-di-VID-ualists ! ! !
Whereto, I ever imprudent, replied: Yes, what the hell do you expect?
AND they departed sadly. And there was one notice in hroosian, conserved somewhere."

-- Ezra Pound, letter to Eustace Mullins, April 6, 1959

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Wyndham Lewis photo by George Charles Beresford 1917

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Quote:Percy Wyndham Lewis is credited with being the founder of the only modernist cultural movement indigenous to Britain. Nonetheless, he is seldom spoken of in the same breath as his contemporaries, Ezra Pound, James Joyce,. T S Eliot and others. Lewis was one of the number of cultural figures who rejected the bourgeoisie liberalism and democracy of the 19th century that descended on the 20th. However, in contradiction to many other writers who eschewed democracy, liberalism and "the Left", Lewis also rejected the counter movement towards a return to the past and a resurgence of the intuitive, the emotional and the instinctual above the intellectual and the rational. Indeed, Lewis vehemently denounced D H Lawrence, for example, for his espousal of instinct above reason.

Lewis was an extreme individualist, whilst rejecting the individualism of 19th Century liberalism. His espousal of a philosophy of distance between the cultural elite and the masses brought him to Nietzsche, although appalled by the popularity of Nietzsche among all and sundry; and to Fascism and the praise of Hitler, but also the eventual rejection of these as being of the masses.

rest over here:

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Froanna (Portrait of the Artist's Wife) (1937)
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
© The Estate of Mrs G.A. Wyndham Lewis: The Wyndham Lewis Memorial Trust,

“The intelligence suffers today automatically in consequence of the attack on all authority, advantage, or privilege. These things are not done away with, it is needless to say, but numerous scapegoats are made of the less politically powerful, to satisfy the egalitarian rage awakened.” -- Wyndham Lewis

Quote: Wyndham Lewis: Radical for the Permanent Things

by Stephen Masty

Wyndham Lewis (1882-1957), dead for more than half a century, may still take celestial delight in remaining so frustrating: he certainly tried hard enough

Firstly, his enormous breadth of talent overwhelms today’s overly-specialised critics in their imposed pigeon-holes: some still call him England’s greatest Twentieth Century portraitist and draughtsman, his substantial shelf of novels could keep another league of critics busy, and his volumes of social criticism a third. Next, nobody could be so marvellously abrasive without lots of practice, so whomever you adore from the first half of the Twentieth Century, Lewis said something snarky about him at least twice. Lastly, he had an almost magnetic attraction to being politically-incorrect, giving any sniffy modern who has not read Lewis a good excuse to dismiss him out of hand. So he is largely ignored: a big mistake.

When Lewis is recalled apart from his paintings it is usually for his invective. In one book, he devoted a whole chapter called “The Dumb Ox” to Ernest Hemingway, who went berserk after reading it in the famous Shakespeare & Company bookshop in Paris, smashed a vase and ended up paying thousands of francs (but he got even and described Lewis as having the eyes of “an unsuccessful rapist”). Virginia Wolfe was scared to show her face in Oxford or Cambridge, the students were so impressed by the drubbing she got from Lewis. James Joyce’s “Ulysses” he described as “a suffocating moeotic expanse of objects” that would remain among the canons of literature, “eternally cathartic, a monument like a record diarrhoea” (if I go “halves” will anyone help get this carved in stone?).

While his best friends, Ezra Pound and T.S. Eliot, called Lewis, respectively, “the only English writer who can be compared to Dostoevsky,” and “the most distinguished living novelist,” he said the former lacked even “a trace of originality,” and accused the latter of “dogmatic insincerity.” However the context is lost to me, they remained friends nevertheless, and this entertaining gossip is still only the “People Magazine” of literary criticism, a nutrition-free distraction.

The man who taught Marshall McLuhan everything he knew about “the global village” (except for the phrase itself), Wyndham Lewis remains desperately timely in his critiques of the youth-cult and its cultural effluvia, the treachery of capitalism, the paucity of well-manipulated bourgeois democracy, and above all the dumbing-down of Western culture and society. If by your friends we shall know ye, think of T. S. Eliot, Roy Campbell and Russell Kirk: in other words he was a conservative defender of The Permanent Things although an ultra-radical, avant-garde modernist, as contradictory as that sounds at first.

Read the rest here:

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Ezra Pound, Paris, 1923, Photographed by Man Ray
(Man Ray was born Emmanuel Radnitzky in South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, in 1890, the eldest child of Russian Jewish immigrants.)

"One of the first things Pound wanted to do when he returned to London was to visit Gaudier-Brzeska's studio. Gaudier lived much closer to the edge of penury than did Pound, a testimonial to his dedication, Pound felt, and Pound used some of his Poetry prize money to purchase two small statues. The studio was under a railway arch leading to the Putney Bridge and every ten minutes a train would roar by. The floor of the studio was dirt, the roof a poor overhead protection, so when it rained Gaudier would have to work in three inches of mud. Like Pound, Gaudier wanted to be considered avant-garde and shocking: he told the sculptor Jacob Epstein that he was homosexual (though he wasn't) with this in mind. Gaudier was clearly an exotic : he spoke of his ambition to live in the jungles of India so he could carve elephants and tigers and wanted to put a four-inch piece of wood through his nostrils. Actually he was the descendant of a family of stone and wood carvers who had helped to build Chartres. In his blue workman's shirt, missing a few teeth, looking like something between a faun and Christ, Gaudier would work indefatigably though he could afford only irregular pieces of poor-quality stone. Pound was impressed with his work because like the Imagists, Gaudier had stripped away artificial decoration and ornament; there were no more "cupids riding mermaids, garlands, or curtains stuck anywhere," Pound remarked. As an artist, Gaudier searched for the purification of essential form, but he was aware of classical Greek sculpture, Egyptian, African, Polynesian, Incan, and Chinese art.

Pound bought Gaudier a piece of rectangular marble and began to sit for a portrait called Hieratic Head. Horace Brodsky, another artist who knew Gaudier, claimed that the sculptor was essentially a prankster, and he carved his nervous and shy subject into a giant phallus as a joke. Gaudier told Pound the head would not resemble him, that he wanted to represent only the poet's emotions . . .

from "Ezra Pound, the Solitary Volcano - John Tytell" page 99


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Price Realized £58,850
Sales totals are hammer price plus buyer’s premium and do not reflect costs, financing fees or application of buyer’s or seller’s credits.
£30,000 - £50,000
• ($43,080 - $71,800)
Sale Information Sale 7849
20th Century British & Irish Art
27 May 2010
London, King Street
Lot Description Henri Gaudier-Brzeska (1891-1915)
signed 'Gaudier' (on the side of the bronze base)

bronze with a green and brown patina
8¼ in. (21 cm.) high, excluding marble base
Plaster conceived in October 1912, presumed lost or destroyed. The present work is one of only two known bronzes and was cast by Parlanti before 1930. The other cast has previously not come to light.

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L'Oiseau de feu
plaster with black paint
three plaster casts were made from the original clay sculpture, one of which was sent to the Parlanti Foundry, Parsons Green, to serve as the mould for the bronze; the location of the other two plaster is not known Raymond Drey had three bronzes cast from the plaster c.1914 - 1918 Leicester Galleries had a further six bronzes made after 1918
63.6 (h) x 34.0 (w) x 27.0 (d) cm
signed, incised lower right base, "H. Gaudier/ Brzeska";
not dated

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Dancer (1913) by Henri Gaudier-Brzeska

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Henri Gaudier-Brzeska Fallen Workman 1912, posthumous cast

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Henri Gaudier-Brzeska displaying 'Bird Swallowing a Fish', 1914
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Henri Gaudier-Brzeska ‘Hieratic Head of Ezra Pound’ (1914) marble, 35 5/8 x 18 x 19 1/4 in., National Gallery of Art
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Quote: Gaudier brought Pound to visit Jacob Epstein, who had constructed what he called the Rock-Drill, an assemblage of a machinelike robot with a menacing visor carrying its progeny, armored, within itself, all mounted on an actual drill. Pound immediately praised Epstein's work in The Egoist, even though it might be expected to "infuriate the denizens of this superficial world," and years later he called a section of his Cantos "Rock-Drill."
from "Ezra Pound, the Solitary Volcano - John Tytell" page 99

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Epstein's 1913 sculpture The Rock Drill in its original form. It is now lost.

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Rock Drill Reconstruction - Jacob Epstein
In 1913 Epstein created an astonishing figure now recongnised as the sculptural masterpiece of the vorticist movement. It comprised a life size plaster figure of a visored seated upon an actual rock drill. It was shown briefly in 1915 before being dismantled. This is a reconstruction made in 1974 from Epstein's studio photographs.
This disturbing figure was concieved as europe slid into the chaos of the first world war. It reduces the human form to a faceless robot, at one with the machine it straddles - an appropriate symbol for the first mechanical conflict.

"And so that you don't continually misunderstand--usury and interest are not the same thing. Usury is a charge made for the use of money regardless of production and often regardless of even the possibilities of production" --
Ezra Pound Reading, vol. 2, Caedmon Records 1962

"I knew at fifteen pretty much what I wanted to do . . . . I resolved that at thirty I would know more about poetry than any man living, that I would know the dynamic content from the shell . . . what part of poetry was 'indestructible,' what part could not be lost by translation . . . what effects were attainable in one language only and were utterly incapable of being translated.

In this search I learned more or less of nine foreign languages, I read Oriental stuff in translations, I fought every University regulation and every preofessor who tried to make me learn anything except this or who bothered me with 'requirements for degrees.'

Of course, no amount of scholarship will help a man write poetry, it may even be regarded as a great burden and hindrance, but it does help him to destroy a certain percentage of his failures. It keeps him discontented with mediocrity."

---- "How I Began," Ezra Pound 1913

"My problem is to keep alive a certain group of advancing poets, to set the arts in their rightful place as the acknowledged guide and lamp of civilization." -- Ezra Pound, Letter to Harriet Monroe, January 1915

"The layman does not realize that a change in literary tastes imperils a lot of electroplates, and that a more efficient mode of expression is just as dangerous for the deciduous or stilted as is a new mechanical invention for a firm which has all its capital sunk in old-fashioned machinery. . . . And so the world goes on being poisoned with dead thought." -- Ezra Pound, Letter to Henry Allen Moe, March 1925

"Lest you forget the nature of money/i.e., that it is a ticket. For the govt. To issue it against any particular merchandise or metal, is merely to favour the owners of that metal and by just that much to betray the rest of the public. You can see that the bill here photod. has SERVED (I mean by the worn state of the note). Certificates of work done. That is what these notes were in fact / before the bank swine got the monopoly. Thus was the wilderness conquered for the sake of pork-barrelers who followed." -- Ezra Pound - postcard to Franklin D. Roosevelt

06-07-2012, 03:45 PM, (This post was last modified: 11-17-2012, 04:32 AM by Negentropic.)
RE: What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ?
Quote: Early in the year Pound met a young American reporter named Ernest Hemingway who had come to Sylvia Beach's bookshop with a letter of introduction and praise from Sherwood Anderson. The son of a physician, he had learned a tremendous concision in writing by working on newspapers rather than attending universities. Hemingway had an earthy immediacy and boyish charm that Pound found irresistible. Radiant wiht an air of robust health and vigor, Hemingway was slim, but he had the back and shoulders of a football player. He rarely spoke about books or writing, but about sports and fishing and his love for woods and streams. When Pound tried to interest him in Eliot's difficulties, Hemingway's response was characteristically abrupt, hard and facetious. If Eliot would strangle his wife, he suggested, rob the bank, and bugger his brain specialist, he might write an even better poem. Pound was impressed by Hemingway's avoidance of sentimentality or affectation in his writing, the economy and lack of superfluous language, a kind of Imagism in prose, and he tried to show Hemingway how to make his style even more sparse and unadorned. Later Hemingway remembered that Pound had taught him more "about how to write and how not to write than anyone else." Pound was the man, he claimed, "who had taught me to distrust adjectives as I would later learn to distrust certain people in certain situations." Soon Hemingway was teaching Pound how to box, a practice he described to his friend Howell Jenkins:

We have a hell of a good time. I'm boxing regular with Ezra Pound, and he has developed a terrific wallop. I can usually cross myself though before he lands them and when he gets too tough I dump him on the floor. He is a good game guy and has come along to beat hell with the gloves--some day I will get careless and he will knock me for a row of latrines. He weighs 180.

Hemingway liked Pound and was more than generous in his account of Pound's pugilistic promise. On one occasion Pound complained to Dorothy that Hemingway treated him like a piece of Dresden china. Another impression, characteristically more astringent, was recorded by Wyndham Lewis, who knocked on Pound's door one morning that summer and received no replay. Lewis pushed the door open himself and saw "a splendidly built youngman, stripped to the waist, and with a torso of dazzling white, standing not far from me. He was tall, handsome, and serene, and was repelling with him boxing gloves--I thought without undue exertion--a hectic assault of Ezra's. After a final swing at the dazzling solar plexus (parried effortlessly by the trousered statue) Pound fell back on his settee." In A Moveable Feast, Hemingway's sometimes maliciously recalled memoir of his Paris years, he recorded his own impression of Lewis's visit. He felt Lewis waited in the hope that Pound would get hurt. Lewis's face reminded Hemingway of a frog and his eyes, under his wide black hat, were the "eyes of an unsuccessful rapist."

In the spring of 1922 Hemingway had gone to report on an economic conference in Genoa and there interviewed Mussolini, whom he found was merely "the biggest bluff in Europe."

from "Ezra Pound, the Solitary Volcano - John Tytell" pages 177-178

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Hadley and Ernest Hemingway in Switzerland, 1922

Quote: Believing in his own fervent and oracular way that consciousness does determine being, he (Ezra Pound) continued to storm the barricades. During 1938 and 1939 he not only sent out a swarm of letters to politicians like Borah and Taft, who were against America getting involved in the war in Europe, but kept up his more serious inquiries into American social history, writing to historians, for example, Charles Beard and Davis R. Dewey; . . .

Among the then-current crop of fiscal reformers contacted by Pound were Arthur Kitson, Gladys Bing, Frederick Soddy, Claude Bowers, Christopher Hollis, and Lincoln Steffens. He wrote to Henry Ford and Gerald L. K. Smith, to Father Charles E. Coughlin and Governor Huey Long. He was in touch throughout with an international brigade of proto-Fascist rabble-rousers, some of them Syndicalists, some anarchists, but all anti-Semites: Leese, Williamson, Chamberlain, Mosley, Forgan, and Drinkwater of Britain; Ciano, Pardi, Pavolini, Polvarelli, Por, Ricciardi, Delcroix, and Stefani of Italy; Gottfried Feder and Hjalmar Schacht of Germany."

"There was so much to do and so little time that Pound was all but devoured. One role could not suffice him, no absolute self, nor fixed identity. He lectured at a number of Italian universities (Bologna, Milan, Rome); borrowed a second-hand printing press in order to expedite the production of his own fliers and pamphlets; acted as liaison between the various monetary reform sects, gathering data and information from one and disbursing it to all."

"His (Pound's) attitude and demeanor were such that even his daughter detected about him what one of the examining government psychiatrists at his sanity hearing in Washington in 1946 typed--an air of 'confabulation'-- he was obsessive, dogmatic, unduly egocentric: 'Sometimes Izzo (Carlo Izzo, a professor of English and American literature, living in Venice, a close associate of Pound's during the 1930s) brought some shy young man interested in poetry. Babbo (Pound) would immediately challenge the newcomer by puling out a ten-lira note and telling him to look at it carefully, to read the fine print. What did it mean, what did it say, what did he know about the nature of money? Nothing. Unless he understood the nature of money he could not understand or write good poetry. Then followed a list of assignments. The young man seldom came a second time.' "

Ezra Pound, The Last Rower, Heymann, pages 78-79

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Ezra Pound with his father and his daughter Mary by Olga Rudge

Quote: From Ezra Pound, The Last Rower, Heymann, pages 80-89

America's welfare was still the central point of concentration for Pound. Surprisingly, the type of government that he favored for the States was no more than a continuation of the old democratic tradition, but one, he cautioned, that "works." He did apparently want to see established in America one or two Fascist ideas, but these only to improve the existing system, so that when he urged representation in Congress according to trades and profession, rather than representation according to geographic distribution, he was not urging this because it was to be found in fascism but as a means of carrying out better the original goals of Jefferson, Adams, Jackson, and Van Buren. Pound's conviction that somewhere along the line the Constitution had been corrupted and the American dream shattered gnawed at him now with increasing persistence. It was with this thought in mind that he decided shortly before the outbreak of the war, to return to the United States. The trip, for all intents and purposes a self-styled mercy mission, was to be his first visit home in nearly three decades. It began in Genoa on April 13, 1939, aboard the Italian Liner Rex.

William Carlos Williams, Ford Madox Ford and H.L. Mencken had been trying for years to get Pound to return home, if only for a brief visit. He had toyed with the prospect before, but at the last moment had always reneged, insisting that the lumpish American scene was worth avoiding. But by January 1939, Having recently returned from London to Rapallo, he experienced a change of heart. In a note to Wyndham Lewis, written at approximately this time, he announced his intention to 'invade the States.' Lewis was living in New York and Pound wanted to join him. With Europe drifting toward war, he was eager, as Noel Stock put it, to play his part in keeping the peace between Italy and the United States and also thought it was time that he went personally to see American leaders, to point out ot them the road to economic as wellas political sanity.

What infuriated him was the inexorable fact that not one American in a thousand knew his constitutional rights. No one, for example, was aware that the United States had not, since 1913, issued its own money, but was instead borrowing money issued by the Federal Reserve Bank, and that prt of the onerous taxes which American citizens paid their government was actually interest on this alleged perpetual loan. Pound felt that if the people could ever know that they were being 'duped' into paying unlawful taxes and encouraged to fight needless wars 'they would rise up in revolution, purify the government and return to a simple, taxless federation of states, ruled by laws, locally passed and locally enforced.' Such was the trigonometry of his vision, and in order to see it through, he was prepared, if need be, to accept an advisory post in government and to spend some months each year in his own country.

Later he would come to regret having made the voyage at all. In the much and mire of the Detention Training Center outside Pisa, sifting through isolated memories now buried under the collapse of history, he would think back on the venture as a complete and utter failure and would record it as such in The Pisan Cantos. At St. Elizabeths, reaffirming his apprehensions, he explained to visitors that he had arrived on American soil too late and in the wrong frame of mind. In the final analysis, the 1939 trip served essentially to convince him of the hopelessness of the general political situation and resulted, upon his return to Italy, in his taking up the microphone in defense of the forces of National Socialism. . .

. . . He arrived in New York harbor on April 21, eight days after leaving Italy. Aboard ship he had occupied a first-class suite. He said in a newspaper interview twenty years later that he had booked to travel second class but had been given the suite for $160 because the ship was empty. He had taken, he said, only one suitcase and a rucksack and had not needed porters; he had spent only $5 over and above his fare.

Gorham Munson sent a wireless message advising, 'Give economic but not political views to the press when interviewed,' and John Cournos sent a welcoming telegram when the liner docked. Munson also went to meet Pound but missed him; by the time he arrived, the poet had cleared customs and departed for 4 Patchin Place in Greenwich Village, home of E.E. Cummings. Before he left he met the press.

The question uppermost in everyone's mind was put to him by one of the ship reporters: Would there be a war?

'Nothing but devilment can start a new war west of the Vistula. I'm not making any accusation against anyone. But the bankers and the munitions interests, whoever and wherever they may be, are more responsible for the present talk of war than are the intentions of Mussolini or anyone else.' Mussolini, he said, 'has a mind with the quickest uptake of any man I know of except Picabia.' And who was Picabia? 'Picabia is the man who ties the knots in Picasso's tail.'

The usual queries followed about contemporary books and writers.

'I regard the literature of social significance as of no significance. It is a pseudo-pink blah. The men who are worth anything today are definitely down on money--writing about money, the problem of money, exchange, gold and silver. I have yet to find a Bolshevik who has written about it.'

What did he think of James Joyce?

'When Joyce was writing I ballyhooed him. Not since he retrogressed.'


'I can name only one poet writing today. I mean E. E. Cummings.'

Ernest Hemingway?

'Hemingway is a good guy, but I don't suppose we'd want to meet personally. Spain.'

Pound was very much pro-fascism as not incompatible with the Jeffersonian vision but a way of safeguarding of it, Hemingway very much against

Jefferson and/or Mussolini by Ezra Pound - can be read here:

zoom the text a little for easier reading

Hemingway's only speech given during his life: Fascism is a lie

Can be read here:

zoom the text a little for easier reading

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"Of the fascist Achilles, now threatening the peace of the world, Mussolini is the heel. To know him is to understand why Italian fascism is a bully's bluff, the romantic thinking of a people who want to be heroes but aren't brave, who want to play soldiers but fear to die, who are terrific in attack until opposed, and then uncatchable in retreat. The way to avoid the world war is to end it where it has begun, in Spain, by smashing world fascism's weakest link, the beatable Italian military machine" -- Ernest Hemingway, KEN, April 7th 1938

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My Autobiography by Benito Mussolini (1928) - pdf download here:

"I personally think extremely well of Mussolini. If one compares him to American presidents (the last three) or British premiers, etc., in fact one can NOT without insulting him. If the intelligentsia don't think well of him, it is because they know nothing about 'the state,' and government, and have no particularly large sense of values. Anyhow, WHAT intelligentsia?" -- Ezra Pound, Letter to Harriet Monroe, November 1925

"Mussolini has steadily refused to be called anything save 'Leader' (Duce) or 'Head of the Government,' the term dictator has been applied by foreign envy, as the Tories were called cattle-stealers. It does not represent the Duce's fundamental conception of his role. His authority comes, as Eirugina proclaimed authority comes, 'from right reason' and from the general fascist conviction that he is more likely to be right than anyone else is." ---Ezra Pound, Jefferson and/or Mussolini, 1935

"I don't believe that anyone venerates Mussolini more than I... I know many exalted personages, and my artist's mind does not shrink from political and social issues. Well, after having seen so many events and so many more or less representative men, I have an overpowering urge to render homage to your Duce. He is the saviour of Italy and – let us hope – Europe". Later, after a private audience with Mussolini, he added, "Unless my ears deceive me, the voice of Rome is the voice of Il Duce. I told him that I felt like a fascist myself... In spite of being extremely busy, Mussolini did me the great honour of conversing with me for three-quarters of an hour. We talked about music, art and politics". --- Igor Stravinsky

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Stravinsky, Venice 1925

"The nation has not disappeared. We used to believe that the concept was totally without substance. Instead we see the nation arise as a palpitating reality before us! ... Class cannot destroy the nation. Class reveals itself as a collection of interests—but the nation is a history of sentiments, traditions, language, culture, and race. Class can become an integral part of the nation, but the one cannot eclipse the other. The class struggle is a vain formula, without effect and consequence wherever one finds a people that has not integrated itself into its proper linguistic and racial confines—where the national problem has not been definitely resolved. In such circumstances the class movement finds itself impaired by an inauspicious historic climate" -- Benito Mussolini

Quote:The Mark Weber Report: What Really was Fascism? Changing Views of Fascism, Facts vs. Propaganda

May 9, 2012

Fascism is one of the most often misused and widely misunderstood political terms. Publicists of both the left and right use the term “fascist” not to describe but to discredit and smear adversaries. “Fascism” is often inaccurately used as a synonym for tyranny, militarism, Nazism, racism, or capitalism. During the first 13 years of Fascist rule in Italy, the regime and its leader (“Duce”), Benito Mussolini, were widely admired in the US and other countries. They earned praise, for example, for resolutely uprooting mafia criminality. Attitudes in the US changed after the Italian subjugation of Ethiopia in 1935-36, and as Mussolini aligned Italy ever more closely with Hitler’s Germany. The image of Mussolini and Fascism that prevails today is largely the product of World War II propaganda.

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Despite their political differences Hemingway was the only one of Pound's American friends along with T.S. Eliot to completely refuse to cooperate with the FBI in their attempt to gather information to indict Pound for committing treason against the USA after Pound started broadcasting from Italy during the war.

Hemingway did not understand what Pound was talking about and considered his political and economic ideas vile, absolutely idiotic drivel. He thought that Pound needed to be saved from himself before it was too late.

Quote:Ernest Hemingway 1943 letter to Archibald MacLeish about Ezra Pound

Thanks for sending the stats of Ezra’s rantings. He is obviously crazy. I think you might prove he was crazy as far back as the latter Cantos. He deserves punishment and disgrace but what he really deserves most is ridicule. He should not be hanged and he should not be made a martyr of. He has a long history of generosity and unselfish aid to other artists and he is one of the greatest living poets. It is impossible to believe that anyone in his right mind could utter the vile, absolutely idiotic drivel he has broadcast. His friends who knew him and who watched the warping and twisting and decay of his mind and his judgment should defend him and explain him on that basis. It will be a completely unpopular but an absolutely necessary thing to do. I have had no correspondence with him for ten years and the last time I saw him was in 1933 when Joyce asked me to come to make it easier having Ezra at his house. Ezra was moderately whacky then. The broadcasts are absolutely balmy. I wish we could talk the whole damned thing over. But you can count on me for anything an honest man should do.

Quote:Archibald MacLeish(May 7, 1892 – April 20, 1982) was an American poet, writer, and the Librarian of Congress. He is associated with the Modernist school of poetry. He received three Pulitzer Prizes for his work.
. . .
MacLeish greatly admired T. S. Eliot and Ezra Pound, and his work shows quite a bit of their influence. He was the literary figure that played the most important role in freeing Ezra Pound from St. Elisabeths Hospital in Washington DC where he was incarcerated for high treason between 1946 and 1958.

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Posted right on Ziopedia as some sort of defense of Theodore Kaufman's despicable 1941 book 'Germany Must Perish' is this quote from this Hemingway:

Ernest Hemingway would adopt the same ideas (as Kaufman) in his introduction to his anthology "Men at War." [13] Writing:

"When this war is won, though, Germany should be so effectively destroyed that we should not have to fight her again for a hundred years, or, if it is done well enough, forever. This can probably only be done by sterilization. This act can be accomplished by an operation little more painful than vaccination and as easily made compulsory. All members of Nazi party organizations should be submitted to it if we are ever to have a peace that is to be anything more than a breathing space between wars. . . . It is not wise to advocate sterilization now as a government or allied policy since it can only cause increased resistance. So I do not advocate it. I oppose it. But it is the only ultimate settlement."[22]!

Can you believe this scumbag Hemingway ?

America was literally 50% from German stock at the time and this guy is advocating the complete sterilization of the majority of the people in their land of origin ! 98% of Germans & 99% of Austrians freely voted for the NSDAP in 1936 but this guy wants them all sterilized and genocided off the face of the planet just like Kaufman !

And this douchebag disgrace to his teacher Ezra Pound's heroic and patriotic memory is considered one of the greatest American writers ?

No wonder ! Now you know why. Now it all makes sense.

This is why Hemingway was so heavily hyped and promoted for so many years. He was practically the German-hating goy version of Theodore Kaufman.


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""Castro's revolution is very pure and beautiful.... I'm encouraged by it." gushed Ernest Hemingway in 1960--shortly before he hightailed it out of Cuba and Castro stole his every belonging.

Not that Ernest didn't have plenty of hoity-toity company in this respect, from Miguel Angel Quevedo (Revista Bohemia) to Pepin Bosch (Bacardi) to Julio Lobo (Cuba's richest sugar Baron) to Carlos Prio.

Fidel Castro and Ernest Hemingway were not friends

It is a common conceit that Fidel Castro and Ernest Hemingway were friends.

By Larry Daley

It is widely stated that Mary Hemingway, Hemingway’s fourth wife and widow, donated his property to Cuba in 1962. However, exile sources declare that Hemingway met with the Cuban leader at the fishing competition primarily trying to convince Castro not to confiscate his property.

Meyers states that Hemingway’s property was officially confiscated after his death. However, Meyers also notes that Hemingway long feared that this would happen, despite the support that he had given Castro. Myers, seemingly over looks the story “The Shot” and its significance in this regard, although he does mention others of similar title.

These fears of confiscation were very rational. Hemingway left Cuba in July 1960 while the massive confiscations were beginning but before the October 14th 1960 “La Ley de la Reforma Urbana.” However even as early a February 7, 1959 expropriations of land without cash payments, were authorized, and the death penalty legalized. Castro, almost immediately after arriving in Havana on January 8th 1959, started the process of confiscating all property on the Island. Although remaining residents were granted usufruct, all residences belonged to the state and use of such property was dependent on the residents’ obedience to the mandates of the Cuban state.

This left private property rights in great jeopardy as the Cuban authorities became more and more aggressive and greedy. It slowly became clear that the Castro government, following its own interpretation of marxist guidelines wanted possession of everything. All this is consistent with the fact that Hemingway left most of his property, books and papers in Cuba. This was usual in such confiscations because household items were inventoried and held on site by the Cuban government agency “Ministerio de Recuperación de Bienes Malversados.” As Hemingway must have known before he left Cuba, his putative plea to retain his property would prove hopeless. One of the dictator’s marxist supporters admiringly states; Fidel Castro even took his mother’s lands.

. . . Castro’s propagandists continue to cover up the confiscation of La Vigía, (see footnote 4), alleging the Hemingway residence was a “donation to the revolution.” The basis for this claim is that Hemingway’s widow Mary was forced to sign papers in this regard in return for being allowed to gather a few items from the house (see footnote 7).

Quote:It is a sad reflection of our time that Che Guevara is seen as a hero

Two new films out this month give the full Hollywood treatment to two very different military and political heroes.

By Nigel Jones

. . .
We know from Ernest Hemingway – then a Cuban resident – what Che was up to. Hemingway, who had looked kindly on Leftist revolutions since the Spanish civil war, invited his friend George Plimpton, editor of the Paris Review, to witness the shooting of prisoners condemned by the tribunals under Guevara's control. They watched as the men were trucked in, unloaded, shot, and taken away. As a result, Plimpton later refused to publish Guevara's memoir, The Motorcycle Diaries.

There have been some 16,000 such executions since the Castro brothers, Guevara and their merry men swept into Havana in January 1959. About 100,000 Cubans who have fallen foul of the regime have been jailed. Two million others have succeeded in escaping Castro's socialist paradise, while an estimated 30,000 have died in the attempt.

There is little mention of this in the deification of Castro's Cuba among the West's liberal classes. The glorification of Guevara in Che and the earlier The Motorcycle Diaries film conveniently ignores it. Nor has the BBC found room, in marking the revolution's half-centenary this week, to expose the reality behind the rhetoric.

Che made no secret of his bloodlust: "It is hatred that makes our soldiers into violent and cold-blooded killing machines," he wrote. But he fell out of love with the revolutionary catastrophe he had created. After helping to ruin the island's economy as minister of industry and president of the Cuban National Bank, he flounced off to bring revolution to Bolivia's peasantry. They turned him over to the army, who shot him in October 1967.

"The blacks, those magnificent examples of the African race who have maintained their racial purity thanks to their lack of an affinity with bathing, have seen their territory invaded by a new kind of slave: the Portuguese." - Che Guevara - The Motorcycle Diaries

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"The black is indolent and a dreamer; spending his meager wage on frivolity or drink; the European has a tradition of work and saving, which has pursued him as far as this corner of America and drives him to advance himself, even independently of his own individual aspirations." - Che Guevara - The Motorcycle Diaries

“We’re going to do for blacks exactly what blacks did for the revolution. By which I mean: nothing.” -Che Guevera

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You knew it was coming. Well, now you can carry around Che Guevara's quotes on your iPhone -- as just announced by the good folks at iPhone!

Alas, many of us, though not customer of this unquestionably hip product, suspect that most of Che Guevara's hippest quotes are missing from this hippest of iPhones. Among those we fear were overlooked:

"My nostrils dilate while savoring the acrid odor of gunpowder and blood...Crazy with fury I will stain my rifle red while slaughtering any surrendered enemy that falls in my hands! With the deaths of my enemies I prepare my being for the sacred fight and join the triumphant proletariat with a bestial howl!" (From Che's own diaries, later immortalized as The Motorcycles Diaries, though we note that executive producer Robert Redford "overlooked" this unquestionably dramatic citation for his movie.)

"Hatred as the central element of our struggle!...Hatred that is intransigent....Hatred so violent that it propels a human being beyond his natural limitations, making him violent and cold- blooded killing machine...We reject any peaceful approach. Violence is inevitable. To establish Socialism rivers of blood must flow!... The imperialist enemy must feel like a hunted animal wherever he moves. Thus we'll destroy him! These hyenas (Americans) are fit only for extermination. We must keep our hatred alive and fan it to paroxysm! The victory of Socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims!" (thus spake the icon of flower-children)

"Don't Shoot! I'm Che! I'm worth to you more alive than dead!" The plea was whimpered with a Eddie Haskell-in-front-of June Cleaver-esque smile on Oct. 8th 1967 in Quebrada de Yuro, Bolivia, as Che dropped his fully-loaded weapons. At the time, Che, dragging along his guerrilla charge Willi, was trying to slink away from a firefight when confronted by two Bolivian soldiers.

That's exactly two flunky Communist guerrillas facing two Bolivian soldiers, by the way. But then, Che's bloodthirsty bluster (see above) always had a habit of evaporating when facing men (or boys) capable of defending themselves. His stock-in-trade was blasting their skulls apart from five feet while they were bound and gagged. (Amazingly, Steven Soderbergh and Benicio del Toro overlooked any depictions of such guaranteed drama in their recent movie.)

""The Negro is indolent and spends his money on frivolities and booze, whereas the European is forward-looking, organized and intelligent."

"What will our Revolution would do for blacks?--why, we'll do for blacks exactly what blacks did for the Cuban revolution. By which I mean: nothing!"

The negro has maintained his racial purity by his well known habit of avoiding baths"
(as if Che had room to talk)

("Viva Che!" bellowed Jesse Jackson while arm in arm with Fidel Castro in Havana in 1984. "I'm like Che with a bling!" sings rapper Jay Z.)

"The solutions to the world's problems lie behind the Iron Curtain.....If the nuclear missiles had remained we would have fired them against the heart of the U.S. including New York City. The victory of socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims." (look for Che t-shirts and any and all "Peace" demonstrations.)

"Mexicans are a rabble of illiterate Indians." (Note the numerous Che T-shirts and banners at May Day demonstrations by Mexican immigrants)

"Bolivian campesinos are simply Animalitos" (Note Bolivian President Evo Morales' frequent genuflections to the ghost of Che Guevara and to his puppeteer, Fidel Castro.)

"Youth must refrain from ungrateful questioning of governmental mandates. Instead they must dedicate themselves to study, work and military service. The very spirit of rebellion is reprehensible." ("Che is our fifth band member!" Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello).

Che the Lionhearted's image indeed belongs on college campuses. But it's usually in the wrong places. He belongs in the marketing, PR, advertising -- and especially -- psychology departments. His lessons and history are fascinating and valuable, but only in light of Sigmund Freud or P.T. Barnum. "One born every minute," Mr. Barnum? If only you'd lived to see the Che phenomenon. Actually, 10 are born every second.

Here's a "guerrilla hero" who in real life never fought in a guerrilla war. When he finally brushed up against one, he was routed and surrendered while a sniveling, whimpering wreck.

Here's a cold-blooded murderer who executed thousands without trial, who claimed that judicial evidence was an "unnecessary bourgeois detail," who stressed that "revolutionaries must become cold-killing machines motivated by pure hate," who stayed up till dawn for months at a time signing death warrants for innocent and honorable men, whose office in La Cabana had a window where he could watch the executions - and today his T-shirts adorn people who oppose capital punishment!

Here's a humorless teetotaler, a plodding paper-pusher, a notorious killjoy and all-around fuddy-duddy - and you see his T-shirt on MTV's Spring Break revelers! Perhaps competent psychologists (if any exist) will explain this some day.

Che excelled in one thing: mass murder of defenseless men. He was a Stalinist to the core, a plodding bureaucrat and a calm, cold-blooded - but again, never in actual battle - killer. Che's true legacy is simply one of terror, murder and sniveling cowardice.

All above quotes are fully-documented in my books. The documentation passed under the magnifying glass and (realizing the horribly blasphemous nature of my book) was quintuple-checked by the entire legal dept. of the 2nd biggest publisher on earth. All documentation passed with flying colors.

Humberto Fontova is the author of four books including Fidel: Hollywood's Favorite Tyrant and Exposing the Real Che Guevara. Visit

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Ricefoot's The Real Truth Behind The Illusion Of 9/11

The Key - Collin Alexander;

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Moon (Full Movie) -

Deanna Spingola Interview with Bart Sibrel of "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Moon"

Astronauts Gone Wild -

Last Days of the Big Lie

September Clues

Introductory Tour Guide to the September Clues research by Simon Shack - (updated on July 18 2011)

Interview with Simon Shack of September Clues - Brian S Staveley, Justin Cooke - 04 / 08 / 2012

Michael Tsarion Archives

Terence McKenna Archives

John Friend's Blog

Mami - Freedom Monkey Radio Commercial Free Archives
07-22-2012, 06:22 PM, (This post was last modified: 10-25-2012, 09:47 AM by Negentropic.)
RE: What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ?


The manifold appeals in The Laws of Media to literature and the structures of language, particularly the attention given to "language as a tool of investigation" in the chapter entitled "Media Poetics" (LOM 215-239), should remind us that Marshall McLuhan came to his studies of technology and media through the agency of literary and linguistic analysis.

This background explains not only the accustomed recourses in his prose to certain fertile texts but also his insistence on viewing all media and/or technology as words having four-part or metaphorical structures. The question of how McLuhan arrived at this means of applying linguistic and literary analysis to the study of media is answered, in part, in his correspondence with Ezra Pound.

The years during which Pound and McLuhan corresponded, 1948-57, were all but identical with the term of Pound's incarceration at St. Elizabeth's Hospital for the Criminally Insane. It is clear from his initial letter that McLuhan was primarily interested in matters of aesthetic theory and literary techniques:

My friend Mr. Kenner and I are much looking forward to a visit and some talk with you about contemporary letters, and your work, in which we have long taken serious interest (31 May 1948).

By 1948, however, Pound had become less amenable to discussing such subjects. Indeed, Pound's reply to a second letter, which was obviously calculated to engage him on subjects (as it no doubt seemed to McLuhan) of great literary import, must have proved quite a shock. For in return for a battery of questions and observations about Pound's poetry and prose, McLuhan received a note of less than thirty words, the substantive body of which reads,

Yu go right on writin' me letters-but dont xpect me to answer questions-even if answers are known-(printed)" (18 [June] 1948).

A more thorough explanation of this reticence arrived some few days later in the form of a letter from Dorothy Pound, although this proved only slightly more encouraging.

E.P. is more interested in agenda, than in analysis of the past. To get a few of you scholars to combine and break the deadlock of all live scholarship; improve the curriculum by definitely insisting on a better set of 50 (or even 100) books... He says some, indeed, most of your questions are answered in the 80 cantos...(21 [June] 1948)

These letters, both in content and tone, are fairly typical of the first half of their correspondence. McLuhan went right on writing letters filled with literary questions and insights, and Pound (or his wife, acting as amanuensis) kept insisting that the grounds for discussion ought to be a serious agenda: "ideas going into action." And yet, even if it would be fair to say that McLuhan and Pound were sometimes content to use each other as a sounding board, it would be wrong to conclude from this sampling that either side was simply disregarding the other. For his part, McLuhan was genuinely interested in learning from one of the great masters of modernist poetry and prose. On the other side, as McLuhan would come to see, Pound was genuinely trying to answer his questions in a way that would make learning, or paideuma as he called it, possible.

As regards McLuhan Studies, these early letters prove enlightening in that they help us to gauge McLuhan's interest in and progress toward developing a mode of analysis suited to investigating the structural relations between technology and culture. Indeed, it may well have been Pound's insistence that "most of your questions are answered in the 80 cantos," along with his invitation to "go right on writin' me," that led McLuhan to discover his second calling. As he was fond of telling students at the University of Toronto and elsewhere, it was his studies in "Joyce-Pound-Eliot" that enabled him to move from the analysis of literature per se to an examination of technology and culture in toto. Each of these writers taught McLuhan how to appreciate "technique as content," the vorticist dynamic that would enable him to arrive at the concept embodied in the now famous aphorism "the medium is the message." In particular, McLuhan's presentation of his investigations into formal relations between language, technology, and culture was strongly influenced by the ideogrammic structure of Pound's poetry and prose.

After their visit to St. Elizabeth's in early June of 1948, McLuhan and Hugh Kenner began in earnest to study the Cantos. As a means to doing so with greater comprehension and efficiency, they took to reading Pound's prose works side by side with the poetry. This technique seems to have proved very profitable for McLuhan. Almost immediately he began to pick up Pound's habit of expressing himself, as McLuhan would later phrase it, "according to the Aristotelean principle of metaphor": that is, by means of analogical ratios tersely juxtaposed. That McLuhan rapidly adopted and developed for his own purpose this way of thinking and writing becomes strikingly clear in a letter of June 1948:

The Pisan Cantos are truly wonderful, showing a range of experience that it would be mere impertinence for me to praise. Are not your affinities (so far as English poetry goes) with Ben Jonson? The same plastic and sculptured world?

The prime difficulty of your poetry-The Cantos-so far as contemporary readers are concerned is the intensely masculine mode. This is an age of psychologism and womb-worship. Your clear resonance and etched contours are intolerable for twilight readers who repose only in implications. (16 June 1948)

I do not mean to say that McLuhan was beholden only to Pound for this technique of arranging his insights tersely and analogically; he was, to be sure, indebted to Harold Innis and many others as well. What I do mean to suggest is that the analogical ratios expressed above, for instance, run not only between Pound and Jonson as lapidary poets but also between these two and the poets of "sensibility," past and present. That is to say, McLuhan manages to place Pound in relation to contemporary poetry as well as among the traditions of English. In this way, past and present find a common and simultaneous ground. Moreover, McLuhan demonstrates an awareness of how artists have tended to respond, sympathetically or otherwise, to what "the age demanded" as Pound puts it in his Hugh Selwyn Mauberley. The contemporary "age of psychologism and wombworship," that is to say, is placed in ratio to the sensibility of certain writers of Jonson's age. This is a technique that McLuhan would later remark in an essay on "Pound's Critical Prose":

. . . when [Pound] says that Sweeney Agonistes contains more essential criticism of Seneca than Mr. Eliot's essays on English Senecanism we have a typical observation whose form is that of exact juxtapostion. It is not a casual [causal?] statement but an ideogram, a presentation of an analogical proportion depending on a precise analysis of Seneca, on the one hand, and of Sweeney Agonistes, on the other. (IL 79)

It was precisely this technique-namely, the use of inclusive and holophrastic allusion in combination with the ratio of analogy-that enabled McLuhan to develop his studies on the relations between technology and culture. McLuhan himself was to articulate this method more fully in a letter of June 1951:

Also I'm interested in such analogies with modern poetry as that provided by the vacuum tube. The latter can tap a huge reservoir of electrical energy, picking it up as a very weak impulse. Then it can shape it and amplify it to major intensity. Technique of allusion as you use it (situational analogies) seems comparable to this type of circuit. Allusion not as ornament but as precise means of making available total energy of any previous situation or culture. Shaping and amplifying it for current use. (12 June 1951)

Through his reading of Pound's poetry and prose McLuhan had discovered a technique for flooding all the past into the present: that is, to a way of presenting historical pattern, change, or development concisely, by means of metaphorical analogy, and precisely, by way of allusion "not as ornament" but as "means of making available total energy of any previous situation or culture." Indeed, this combination serves as the "theoretical" basis for The Gutenberg Galaxy: namely, that the 20th century is undergoing the effects of a technical revolution in a way that is analogous to the technical revolution begun by Gutenberg in the Renaissance. The only problem with this mode of thinking and presentation, as McLuhan was to discover, lay in the resistance with which it was met, and continues to be met, by Western intellectuals. For, as McLuhan put it in a letter written in 1948, this way of writing and thinking is inaccessible to those whose mentality is "incorruptibly dialectical."

The American mind is not even close to being amenable to the ideogram principle as yet. The reason is simply this. America is 100% 18th century. The 18th century chucked out the principle of metaphor and analogy-the basic fact that as A is to B so C is to D. AB : CD. It can see AB relations. But all relations in four terms are still verboten. This amounts to a deep occultation of all human thought for the U.S.A. (21 December 1948)

It was precisely this structure and action of the metaphorical analogy, of course, that enabled McLuhan and his son Eric, many years later, to arrive at tetradic model of laws with which to study media "scientifically."

The other early insight into the method of the Cantos was cued by Pound himself in that historic conversation of 1948 with McLuhan and Kenner at St Elizabeths:
I've been pondering your remark that Cantos 1-40 are a detective story. Should be glad of further clues from you. But one thing about crime fiction that I have noted may or may not be apropos here. Poe in 1840 or so invented the cinema via Dupin. Dupin deals with a corpse as still life. That is, by cinematic montage he reconstructs the crime, as all sleuths have since done. Are Cantos 1-40 such a reconstruction of a crime? Crime against man and civilization. Are the entire Cantos such a reconstruction at once of a continuing crime and of the collateral life that might have been and might still be? (16 June 1948)

Although in 1948 McLuhan was interested in reconstruction largely as a means to understanding the history of literary technique, he soon began to see alternative possibilities. The history of art and the techniques employed to produce it were inextricably bound up with cultural changes that were, in turn, linked structurally to the extensions of man reached through technological innovation. Indeed, evidence of this very history was to be found in Pound's poetry and prose, particularly the Cantos and Guide to Kulchur. In order to discover a means to study these relations, McLuhan himself had to become a kind of detective.

The question of how to reconstruct the past is one that McLuhan addresses in the same letter of June 1948:

Your Cantos, I now judge to be the first and only serious use of the great technical possibilities of the cinematograph. Am I right in thinking of them as a montage of personae and sculptured images? Flash-backs providing perceptions of simultaneities? (16 June 1948)

These "simultaneities," as McLuhan calls them, are precisely the situational analogies and/or historical rhymes that can be presented only through the agency of metaphorical and/or tetradic logic. To conceive of these simultaneities requires, in the first place, enormous erudition. To present them requires some skill in technical matters-the sculpturing of images, for instance, and the use of flashbacks. In each case, the transference of techniques from other media to print must be effected with both knowledge and craft. Pound's poetry and prose, in other words, served as a model for bringing over into speech and writing the unspoken and unwritten relations between seemingly time-bound cultures and diverse technologies.

By November of 1948, McLuhan had come to appreciate more fully the sense in which Pound's Cantos are a kind of detective story; for to discover luminous moments, characters, and situations of human history and arrange them in analogical ratios, one had to be a very erudite and skillful detective indeed.

You know, going through [Ford Madox] Ford, and trying to read all that he says I must, has given me quite a feeling of inadequacy and irrelevance. That will pass by the time I have finished reading the next 200 volumes. But the sense of only now reading the things I should have read all along has sapped me. And to write to yourself, who have for forty-five years taken for granted all this learning, perception and all, well it seemed sheer impertience. (7 Nov. 1948)

By 1951, having achieved a more thorough understanding of Pound's technique and historical approach, McLuhan began to emulate his method more efficiently:

Cinema was immediate consequence of discovery of discontinuity as principle of picturesque landscape. MOVING PICTURES were made and shown in Naples and London in 1770. Painted scenes on rollers projected by lantern. This led at once to discovery of principle of reconstruction of situation by intellectual retracing. Retracing conditions leading to apprehension and arrest was Poe's discovery. Led to detective story and symbolist poem. Detective story as reconstruction of crime by cinematic projection within the mind. Crime not explained but revealed... If I'd got hold of your work 15 years ago I'd be somewhere further along now. Can at least get you into some young minds here and now. (2 August 1951)

As with his analogy to the vacuum tube, McLuhan shows here his developing understanding of literary technique as both structurally and conceptually analogous to other technologies, not merely to other 'artistic' media. We find here as well the concept of the "discovery of the technique of discovery" to which McLuhan would return time and again.

It was no accident that a year later McLuhan would offer in a letter to Pound the rough outlines of his book on "the end of the Gutenberg Era" (16 July 1952); for by then he was fully ready to adapt Pound's ideogrammic method to his study of technology and culture. The primary metaphorical analogy to be appreciated and reconstructed in this connection was the relation between the effects issuing in the Renaissance from Gutenberg's invention of the printing press and those effects created in our own age by electronic technology-in short, AB : CD. His case was to be presented in The Gutenbery Galaxy by means of allusions to luminous moments, characters, and situations leading up to, during, and after the Renaissance. He would proceed in the manner of a detective, reconstructing the process of technological change as reflected in cultural habits and representative works of art. This course could be taken only with the aid of erudition acquired in the way of a detective. Reconstructing the metamorphoses of culture set in action by new technology required a highly developed and informed selectivity, not only for the sake of brevity but also as a way of insuring that the historical allusions would be capable of "making available total energy of any previous situation or culture."

Moreover, it was necessary to emulate Pound's technique as a means of "[s]haping and amplifying [the allusions] for current use." For McLuhan was concerned with giving the past a contemporary relevance that would open the windows of the past to the present rather than slap contemporary conceptions and morals onto previous cultures.

As a way of gauging McLuhan's debt to Pound, we would do well to compare his description of Pound's critical writing with our experience of reading McLuhan's own prose:

... Mr. Pound seldom translates himself into ordinary prose. And anecdotes and reported conversations which enrich his essays are, in the same way, never casually [causally?] illustrative but ideogrammatic. In the language of the schoolmen, for whose precision of dissociation Mr. Pound has so frequently expressed his admiration, the ideogram represents the "copula of agglutination." That is to say, the copula of existential reality and not the copula which connections, enunciations, and conceptions in rationalistic discourse. And it is the consequent solidity and sharpness of particularized actuality... that baffles the reader who looks for continuous argumentation in Mr. Pound's prose and verse alike. (IL 79-80)

This writing, which reflects a metaphorical and/or ideogrammic way of thinking, works in much the same way for McLuhan as it does for Pound. That is to say, it has many of the same virtues of Pound's style while it presents some of the same difficulties. Through laconic juxtapostion, McLuhan's prose encapsulates historical processes and presents them as "simultaneities" in luminous nodes and whirling vortices. But his work also assumes in the reader a vast erudition and willingness to think metaphorically rather than linearly-a willingness Pound demanded from McLuhan from the very beginning of their correspondence.

Works Cited
McLuhan, Marshall. Letters to Ezra Pound. The Lilly Library, University of Indiana, Bloomington.
________. "Pound's Critical Prose." In The Interior Landscape: The Literary Criticism of Marshall McLuhan. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1969.
________ and Eric McLuhan. Laws of the Media. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1988.
Pound, Ezra. Letters to Marshall McLuhan. Canada's National Public Archives, Ottawa.

Quote:Letter to Ezra Pound

Toronto, 21st December 1948

Dear Pound,

Much delighted with the Trieste newspapers. The job on Hemingway most amusing. And the Joyce item a gem. Very significant too the Cicero review. My Italian not too adequate even for newspapers though.

The post has just brought The Great Trade Route (1). So I now have the only copy in Toronto. Am keen to get at it. Giovanelli and I are talking Ford up into a small boom. The time is ripe. And it is the best strategy for preparing the ground for a more adequate approach to your own achievement. Intellectually at least, the obfuscators via Marx are pulling rocks over themselves.

Seon Givens of Vanguard Press, the editor in charge of my book on Industrial Folklore (2) is a Mary Butts collector. Has everything. She (Seon Givens) plans to visit you soon.
As Giovanelli and I work up the W. Lewis cause we discover any number of Lewis fans who have warmed themselves secretly at his fires these 25 years!

The American mind is not even close to being amenable to the ideogram principle as yet. The reason is simply this. America is 100% 18th Century. The 18th century had chucked out the principle of metaphor and analogy — the basic fact that as A is to B so is C to D. AB:CD. It can see AB relations. But relations in four terms are still verboten. This amounts to deep occultation of nearly all human thought for the U.S.A.

I am trying to devise a way of stating this difficulty as it exists. Until stated and publicly recognized for what it is, poetry and the arts can’t exist in America. Mere exposure to the arts does nothing for a mentality which is incorrigibly dialectical. The vital tensions and nutritive action of ideogram remain inaccessible to this state of mind.

With most cordial seasonable wishes for you and Mrs. Pound.

Marshall McLuhan

from Marshall McLuhan — Complete Correspondence,

edited by Matie Molinaro & Corinne McLuhan

[Image: buckymarshall.jpg]
Marshall McLuhan with R. Buckminster Fuller

“Buckminster Fuller
friend of the universe
bringer of happiness.
liberator.” Ezra Pound (June 29, 1971)

Annie Hall (1977) scene with Marshall McLuhan

Ezra Pound on Usury:

This war didn’t begin in 1939. It is not a unique result of the infamous Versailles Treaty. It is impossible to understand it without knowing at least a few precedent historic events, which mark the cycle of combat… This war is part of the age-old struggle between the usurer and the rest of mankind: between the usurer and peasant, between the usurer and producer, and finally between the usurer and the merchant…

Usurers provoke wars to impose monopolies, so that they can get the world by the throat. They provoke wars to create debts, so that they can extort the interest and rake in the profits resulting from changes in the values of monetary units. A nation that will not get into debt drives the usurers to fury. This war is a chapter in the long and bloody tragedy which began with the foundation of the Bank of England in far away 1694, with the openly declared prospectus: ‘The bank hath the benefit of the interest on all monies which it creates out of nothing’.

Usury has gnawed into England since the days of Elisabeth. First it was mortgages, mortgages on earls’ estates; usury against the feudal nobility. Then there were attacks on the common land, filching of village common pasture. Then they developed a usury system, from Cromwell’s time, ever increasing… They are working day and night, picking your pockets. Every day and all day and all night picking the Russian working man’s pocket.

I do not want my compatriots from the ages of 20 to 40 to go get slaughtered to keep up the Sassoon and other British Jew rackets in Singapore and Shanghai… No Rothschild is English, no Baruch, Morgenthau, Cohen, Lehman, Warburg, Kuhn, Kahn, Schiff, Sieff or Solomon was ever born Anglo-Saxon. And it is for this filth that you fight. It is for this filth that you murdered your Empire…

Wars are destructive to nation-states but profitable for the special interests. International bankers, Jewish bankers in particular are those who are the primary beneficiaries of the profits from war. Sometime the Anglo-Saxon may awaken to the fact that nations are shoved into wars in order to destroy themselves, to break up their structure, to destroy their social order, to destroy their populations.

Understanding of usury is central to understanding of history. Until you know who has lent what to whom, you know nothing whatever of politics, you know nothing whatever of history, you know nothing whatever of international wrangles.

There is no freedom without economic freedom. Freedom that doesn’t include freedom from debt is plain bunkum. It is fetid and foul logomachy to call such servitude freedom…

History of Usury - by J.B.C. Murray

"I understand that I am under indictment for treason. I have done my best to get an authentic report of your statement to this effect. And I wish to place the following facts before you.

I do not believe that the simple fact of speaking over the radio, wherever placed, can in itself constitute treason. I think that must depend on what is said, and on the motives for speaking.

I obtained the concession to speak over Rome radio with the following proviso. Namely that nothing should be asked of me contrary to my conscience or contrary to my duties as an American citizen. I obtained a declaration on their part of a belief in 'the free expression of opinion by those qualified to have an opinion.'

The legal mind of the Attorney General will understand the interest inherent in this distinction, as from unqualified right of expression.

The declaration was made several times in the announcement of my speeches; with the declaration 'He will not be asked to say anything contrary to his conscience, or contrary to his duties as an American citizen'

These conditions have been adhered to. The only time I had an opinion as to what might be interesting as subject matter, I was asked whether I would speak of religion. This seemed to me hardly my subject, though I did transmit on one occasion some passages from Confucius under the title 'The Organum of Confucius.'

I have not spoken with regard to this war, but in protest against a system which creates one war after another, in series and in system. I have not spoken to the troops, and have not suggested that the troops should mutiny or revolt.

The whole basis of democratic or majority government assumes that the citizen shall be informed of the facts. I have not claimed to know all the facts, but I have claimed to know some of the facts which are an essential part of the total that should be known to the people.

I have for years believed that the American people should be better informed as to Europe, and informed by men who are not tied to a special interest or under definite control.

The freedom of the press has become a farce, as everyone knows that the press is controlled, if not by its titular owners, at least by the advertisers.

Free speech under modern conditions becomes a mockery if it does not include the right of free speech over the radio.

And the point is worth establishing. The assumption of the right to punish and take vengeance regardless of the area of jurisdiction is dangerous. I do not mean in a small way; but for the nation.

I returned to America before the war to protest against particular forces then engaged in trying to create war and to make sure that the USA should be dragged into it.

Arthur Kitson's testimony before the Cunliffe and MacMillan commissions was insufficiently known. Brooks Adams brought to light several currents in history that should be better known. The course of events following the foundation of the Bank of England should be known, and considered in sequence: the suppression of colonial paper money, especially in Pennsylvania! The similar curves following the Napoleonic wars, and our Civil War and Versailles need more attention.

We have not the right to drift into another error similar to that of the Versailles Treaty.

We have, I think, the right to a moderate expansion including defence of the Caribbean, the elimination of foreign powers from the American continent, but such expansion should not take place at the cost of deteriorating or ruining the internal structure of the USA. The ruin of markets, the perversions of trade routes, in fact all the matters on which my talks have been based is of importance to the American citizen; whom neither you nor I should betray either in time of war or peace. I may say in passing that I took out a life membership in the American Academy of Social and Political Science in the hope of obtaining fuller discussion of some of these issues, but did not find them read for full and frank expression of certain vital elements in the case; this may in part have been due to their incomprehension of the nature of the case.

At any rate a man's duties increase with his knowledge. A war between the U.S. and Italy is monstrous and should not have occurred.

And a peace without justice is no peace but merely a prelude to future wars. Someone must take count of these things. And having taken count must act on his knowledge; admitting that his knowledge is partial and his judgment subject to error."

~ Ezra Pound -- Letter to Francis Biddle, Attorney General of the United States during Bankster World Massacre II and primary American judge during the postwar Nuremberg Trials. During World War II Biddle used the Espionage Act to attempt to shut down 'vermin publications'. This included Father Coughlin's publication entitled Social Justice.

"Dorothy Pound had finally learned through the press that her husband was imprisoned in Washington. When she arrived there, her funds were nearly exhausted. Government officials promptly declared her an 'enemy alien,' although she had been married to an American citizen for forty-two years. As an enemy alien, she was not allowed to draw upon her savings in England. Cummings and Hemingway generously advanced money, which carried her through those difficult days. She was allowed to visit her husband for only fifteen minutes each afternoon, as she began a vigil that was to last for more than twelve years. A guard was present during these brief meetings. Dr. Overholser explained this extra precaution by saying that Pound was under indictment for the most serious offense in American jurisprudence." -- from "Ezra Pound, This Difficult Individual" by Eustace Mullins, Page 19

"In this atmosphere, Ezra led a monastic existence. He spent most of the day studying and writing in an incredibly tiny room that had a single narrow window. He was able to close his door partially, but this did not keep out the blare of the radios, or the roar of the television, which came after 1952. Nor did the door protect him from teh murmur of the old men's voices as they paused in teh hall, muttering over and over the arguments that they had used, or had meant to use, in some long-forgotten crisis.

I had said very little on this first visit, and supposed that I was making no impression. As the hospital bell tolled four, the signal for visitors to leave, Ezra fixed those very piercing eyes on me and asked, 'What day would you like?'

'Oh, Tuesday would be all right with me,' I replied hesitantly, without knowing what was meant.

'Let's see, we don't have anyone coming on Tuesday, do we?' he asked his wife.

'Not at the present,' she answered. 'Dick has gone off on some sort of expedition, and he won't be around for awhile.'

'Good,' he said to me. 'I'll see you then.'

He vigorously shook hands with each of us, as the gaoler came up with his bunch of keys and unlocked the door. Ezra kissed his wife goodbye, and we were let out into an atmosphere of freedom. Once we were on the lawn, I breathed deeply, trying to get that terrible musty odor out of my lungs. Dorothy Pound was observing me, and she smiled gently but said nothing. After all, she was going in and out of that hellish place every day.

The Flemings drove Dorothy Pound home to the tiny apartment that she occupied a few blocks from the hospital. Later, as they took me downtown, Polly triumphantly exclaimed, 'I thought he would like you!'

'How do you know?' I asked. 'He didn't seem to pay much attention to me.'

'Oh yes,' she said. 'Why, he has given you your own day!' She explained that this was quite unusual. Only a few of Pound's friends were allowed a specific day of their own each week, adn to their knowledge, Pound had never extended this privilege to anyone on his first visit." -- from Ezra Pound, This Difficult Individual, by Eustace Mullins, pages 24-25

[Image: eustace_mullins_1952.gif]

Eustace Mullins - Secrets of the Federal Reserve

Eustace Mullins - The World Order

Eustace Mullins - Murder by Injection, The Medical Conspiracy Against America

Eustace Mullins - The Secret holocaust -

Eustace Mullins - The Rape of Justice: America's Tribunals Exposed

Eustace Mullins - Mullins' New History of the Jew

Eustace Mullins - The Curse of Canaan, A Demonology of History
08-19-2012, 10:49 PM, (This post was last modified: 11-17-2012, 04:28 AM by Negentropic.)
RE: What Was Ezra Pound Really Like ?
Quote:Ezra Pound on Money

by Carolina Hartley

May 26, 2010

We're never far from money. We spend most of our time and energy in quest of money.

But how did this thing become an intermediary between us and the world around us? Before money, we bartered. Why did money supplant barter and who is custodian of the money system?

These questions are dangerous: they cost Ezra Pound twelve years. Pound was a victim of political persecution at the behest of financiers and their minions like Franklin Delano Roosevelt. These people feared Ezra because he asked “what is money for,” and came up with an inconvenient answer.

Pound understood that money is ticket for exchange. People who make things can trade more easily with other people who make things using money. There should only be as much money as there are things to trade. Another way of saying this is: money supply should increase and decrease along with the change in economic output.

Here's the rub. If money supply grows faster than the amount of things made, then theft is taking place. The thief creates extraneous dollars and spends them first: at the time when the rest of us expect a dollar to be worth a certain amount. By the time the thief's dollars have been absorbed into the economy, we notice our dollars are buying less. This is inflation. The thief has dipped into our savings and traded with shoddy bills.

What happens when money supply shrinks compared to things made? Then a new characteristic of money emerges. Things made don't always last — take bread for instance. A baker must sell his bread in a matter of days, otherwise it's lost. Money isn't bound by such considerations. A thief can horde money until the baker's goods rot, then buy his bakery at a huge discount.

The “thief” in both these examples holds a special place in society: he controls the supply of money and “future money” called credit. Controlling money supply is economic power; it is a sovereign privilege. The people who really control a nation control its money supply. [1]

Pound's criticism of the financial class was that they were bad sovereigns. They managed money supply for their own benefit: they were thieves. In contrast, the Founding Fathers were good rulers because they designed a system where Congress managed the money supply; and Congress was answerable to a large swathe of the population.

Pound identified the grasping, vampire-like nature of international finance, and the venal nature of its supporters in national governments.[2] He was interested in finding ways to systematically limit their power: perfecting what the Founding Fathers started in Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution. This is why Pound studied in the work of Silvio Gesell.

One of Gesell's ideas was to eliminate the disparity between money and perishable goods. A way to do this is to discount large bills over time: holders of large bills would need to get them stamped every month, each stamp representing a decrease in their value. This way, hoarders bear the cost of their behavior and investment is encouraged. Small denominations would not be discounted.

Gesell recognized that the economy is like a body and money is like its blood. If blood builds up systematically in any one place, a disease results. His discounted script discouraged people from taking advantage of others' simple lack of cash. (Note: this is very different than being forced to lend to people who aren't creditworthy.) Saving in the form of investment was systematically encouraged.

Pound notes that Gesell's system worked imperfectly in Alberta, Canada mostly due to planning errors that could easily be fixed. The system worked very well in the Austrian village of Wörgl, and it was promptly closed down by mainstream financial interests.

These financial interests were trying to preserve their privilege: they benefited from the increasing productivity of the societies they milked. Pound didn't see how being born into a banking family; or buying the latest politician; should give them the right to those benefits. Ezra liked the ideas of Major Clifford Douglas: the people who worked should accrue those benefits. This is the essence of Social Credit.

The text of the 1933 version of Major Douglas' book Social Credit, can be found here.

Pound appreciated Maj. Douglas' ideas, but thought they needed further exploration. What Pound really felt passionate about was fixing the money problem. Ezra wrote during the Great Depression when, much like now, people were captivated by the supposed security of gold.

Pound was never an advocate of gold-backed money. He understood how easily such systems can be subverted by controlling the supply or the clearing market for the backing commodity. Much of Britain's power during the 19th century came from the fact that London was the clearing market for gold; and other nations used a gold-standard currency. They had to go to England to manage their money!

In Ezra's words:

"The trick is simple. Whenever the Rothschild and other gents in the gold business have gold to sell, they raise the price. The public is fooled by propagandizing the devaluation of the dollar, or other monetary unit according to the country chosen to be victimized. The argument is that the high price of the monetary unit is injurious to the nation's commerce.

But when the nation, that is, the people of that nation own the gold and the financiers own the dollars or other monetary units, the gold standard is restored. This raises the value of the dollar and the citizens of 'rich' nations, as well as citizens of other nations, are diddled.

Preventing nations from being “diddled” is why Pound supported Fascism in Italy. He saw Fascism as the only system available to the Italians that was likely to deal with the threat from international finance. Mussolini's Fascism let Italy be ruled in an Italian fashion — and until Anglo-American banking interests were threatened, things worked better in Italy than they had in a long time.

Pound never supported Fascism in America. We have our Constitution, which describes a government for Americans run in the American fashion. If it ain't broke, don’t fix it. Pound realized that America's challenge was implementing the laws we already have. Read Jefferson and/or Mussolini for his whole argument. [3]

Ezra was a true economic historian. He explained his analysis in the following way:

“The definition of an idea, as observed by someone who understands the events of the day, may shed more light on the historical process than many volumes.”

“History, as seen by a Monetary Economist, is a continuous struggle between producers and non-producers, and those who try to make a living by inserting a false system of book-keeping between the producers and their just recompense.”

“The usurers act through fraud, falsification, superstitions, habits and, when these methods do not function, they let loose a war. Everything hinges on monopoly, and the particular monopolies hinge around the great illusionistic monetary monopoly.”

Pound's analysis identified the canker in American life: the cooperation between government and finance to defraud the public — the “monetary monopoly.” Monopolies don't exist without tacit government approval. Beneficiaries of the financial monopoly have collaborated with venal officials against producers for a long time. The history of the largest American fortunes, since the Civil War at least, have followed this trend.

Historically, banking was begun by families as private businesses. As these businesses grew and issued receipts for gold and silver deposits, they gradually developed “fractional reserve” banking by issuing more notes than they had gold on deposit. Although kings would mint coins of gold and silver they owned at their royal mints, fractional reserve banking was a dangerous business, and Kings did not want to gamble with their sovereign power by going into that business. Rather, kings and especially parliaments, became dependent upon these fractional reserve bankers for loans, and would grant monopoly charters to a group of private bankers to create a national or central bank which would then have the power to regulate the size of the money stock through its fractional reserve activities, as it collected taxes, issued the national paper currency and sold sovereign debt on behalf of the government.

These national or central banks conferred significant advantages on the private banks that organized and owned them. Private banks were allowed to borrow at the discount window at special rates provided that they posted reserves with the central bank. Of course, the real advantage of the central bank for its owners and organizers was inside information. During the years of the gold standard, having a seat on the board of a central bank meant that the insider would know when emergency borrowings ticked up, telegraphing the probable start of a bank crisis and stock market crash. In the case of war, it was an easy task for a private bank with seats in several different national banks to calculate the deposits and income of the contesting states and the loans they secured to raise their armies, thus allowing the privileged few to bet on the probable winner.

The gold standard was popular among bankers for the simple reason that the supply of gold increased irregularly but on average more slowly than the increase in population, meaning that the value of loans would gradually increase over time as would the burden of repayment. Debtors resented the power of gold, hence William Jennings Bryan’s political appeal and his famous “Cross of Gold” speech. Coincidentally the gold standard was finally abandoned in 1971, six years after the birth control pill descended upon the civilized world.

Pound recognized two very important threats to the international banking community that arose out of the Third Reich. First, Hitler abandoned the gold standard, meaning that Nazi Germany suddenly had the power to prevent defaulting on its future debt simply by printing money — a power that the U.S. copied from Germany just as it copied the autobahns. Second, and much more important, the Reich took back the power of central banks by financing infrastructure projects directly, issuing notes in payment to the laborers, contractors, and suppliers rather than first borrowing the money from a central bank at interest.

If this practice had spread, bankers would be no more powerful than plumbers.

Furthermore, as long as the supply of this newly printed money in the form of notes matched the increase in GNP and future productivity from these new highways, rails, and factories, the printing of money would not necessarily produce inflation. The Reich also issued debt directly to German citizens and businesses to finance Hitler’s economic miracle, but the central banks lost control over the money supply and lost the ability to trigger banking panics and depressions inside the Reich. It was a mortal threat, and it had to be stopped. Pound was right.

Hitler’s experiment in freedom from banking was broken, and the finance/government partnership was preserved at the cost of millions of lives in World War II.

This finance/government collaboration explains the American elites' love affair with international socialism. They don't know how to make money any other way. Competition is a sin. Government organized monopolies are profitable when you control the government. If there are no national restrictions on moving profits around, they can hide their loot offshore. The perfect crime.

Pound recommended the writings of John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and Martin Van Buren[4] for a practical explanation of how the young Republic wrested itself from London finance. He recommended Classical study (Aristotle's Politics and the works of Demosthenes) for understanding the tricks financiers use. Nationally-controlled money was popular politics until the Civil War; when Pound notes a collective amnesia took the mind of the American public.

Tragedy and forgetfulness. This is also the time when Lincoln let the bankers back in with the National Banking Act.

Ezra didn't revel in victimhood. The “monetary monopoly” was made possible by voters' laziness. In his ABC of Economics, Pound castigates the American public for letting its money fall into the hands of enemies and irresponsible men. Americans circa 1930 were ignorant about money and banking; the situation now is even worse.

It is a national tragedy that we have been lazy enough to let Congress sell its responsibilities; and let hostile elites control our credit.

The way to fix the situation is to dissolve the Federal Reserve; force Congress to manage money supply as described in the Constitution; and vote the venal or incompetent out of office. The revolutionary patriots gave us the tools; we need to step up to the plate and use them.

Our amnesia and laziness have had a lot of help. Pound pointed out that hostile elites were overrepresented in academia and the media — a situation which has worsened with time. Now we are reaping the harvest: schools devoid of the Classics; universities teaching castrated Economics; and Gloria Vanderbilt's boy on TV. Ezra saw it coming, and he told us how to fix it.

Carolina Hartley has a degree in Finance and Economics from the University of Chicago. She is also student of aesthetics and social history, though not from the orthodox perspective.

[1] Pound's repeated recommendation of Christopher Hollis' work The Two Nations is based on the book’s excellent explanation of British economic power over the centuries.

[2] "Ezra Pound Speaking": Radio Speeches of World War II. Edited by Leonard W. Doob. Greenwood Press, 1978.

[3] Pound recommended the correspondence between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson and the writings of Van Buren for the economic history of the United States.

Pound's Pamphlets on Money are excellent; the first “An Introduction to the Economic Nature of the United States” and “A Visiting Card” are particularly useful. (Published by Peter Russell, London. 1950.)

[4] The Works of John Adams: Second President of the United States: with A Life of the Author, notes and illustrations, by his Grandson, Charles Francis Adams. Little, Brown and Co. Boston 1850–56.

The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, Memorial Edition, XX Volumes, Washington, 1903-04.

The Autobiography of Martin Van Buren, written in 1854 and remaining in manuscript until its publication as Vol. II of the “Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the year 1918,” Government Printing Office, Washington 1920.

Pound also recommends Jefferson and Hamilton by Claude G. Bower.

Quote:[Image: C_H_Douglas.jpg]

Social credit is an economic philosophy developed by Major C. H. (Clifford Hugh) Douglas (1879–1952), a British engineer, who wrote a book by that name in 1924. Social Credit is described by Douglas[1] as "the policy of a philosophy"; he called his philosophy "practical Christianity". This philosophy is interdisciplinary in nature, encompassing the fields of economics, political science, history, accounting and physics. Assuming the only safe place for power is in many hands, social credit is a distributive philosophy, and its policy is to disperse power to individuals. Social Credit philosophy is best summed by Douglas when he said, "Systems were made for men, and not men for systems, and the interest of man which is self-development, is above all systems, whether theological, political or economic."[2] Douglas said that Social Crediters want to build a new civilization based upon absolute economic security for the individual—where “...they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid.”[3][4] In other words, Douglas did not seek to build a utopia, but to set the conditions upon which each individual can build their own utopia.

The text of the 1933 version of Major Douglas' book Social Credit, can be found here:

Quote:Silvio Gesell - The NATURAL ECONOMIC ORDER translated by Philip Pye M.A. can be read here:

[Image: Silvio_Gesell_%281895%29.jpg]

Silvio Gesell (March 17, 1862 – March 11, 1930) was a German merchant, theoretical economist, social activist, anarchist and founder of Freiwirtschaft. He was a disciple of Proudhon and, like Proudhon, a critic of Marx's understanding of the nature of money.

Gesell was a major influence on the economic thought of Ezra Pound during the 1930s. Pound came to believe during the 1920s that the cause of the First World War was finance capitalism, which he called "usury", and that the solution was C.H. Douglas's idea of social credit, with fascism as the vehicle for reform; he had met Douglas in The New Age offices and had been impressed by his ideas.[64] Pound's allegiance to fascist Italy lay in his belief that Mussolini's regime had the power and the desire to reform economics in a way that would end poverty and war.

"Men do not understand books until they have a certain amount of life, or at any rate no man understands a deep book, until he has seen and lived at least part of its contents."
- Ezra Pound

"A great age of literature is perhaps always a great age of translations."
- Ezra Pound

"The modern artist must live by craft and violence. His gods are violent gods. Those artists, so called, whose work does not show this strife, are uninteresting."
- Ezra Pound

"Good art however "immoral" is wholly a thing of virtue. Good art can NOT be immoral. By good art I mean art that bears true witness, I mean the art that is most precise."
- Ezra Pound

"A civilized man is one who will give a serious answer to a serious question. Civilization itself is a certain sane balance of values."
- Ezra Pound

"The image is more than an idea. It is a vortex or cluster of fused ideas and is endowed with energy."
- Ezra Pound


It was in this world that Alvin Langdon Coburn, an American émigré from Boston, found himself when he met Ezra Pound and his cutting-edge creatives in London in 1913. The glass Coburn used in the process was said to be a broken shaving mirror of Pound’s; it was, of course, Pound who bestowed upon Coburn’s work the title Vortographs – it was Pound, too, who wrote the introduction to his exhibition catalogue for his 1917 exhibition in the Camera Club in London, considered the first presentation of abstract photography. Pound even wrote to his own father, proclaiming that, “Coburn and I have invented Vortography. The idea is one no longer need photograph what is in front of the camera, but can use one’s element of design”. The exhibition was a sensation, if not a critical success. But ironically, Vorticism’s allegiance to “machine aesthetic” was its downfall. As the Great War progressed, the extreme violence facilitated by the machine gun marred the artists’ conceptual theories of beauty with a reality too painful to stomach. It seems that Coburn’s photographs were already attempting to shake free from the hard-edged realities the movement so admired, predicting the fading idealism behind Vorticism, as much as reflecting it.

At any rate, Coburn made exquisitely beautiful photographs which represent several important firsts in art photography. He helped initiate the change in photography from pictorialism, a style which imitated painting, to modernism, a style that consciously emphasized the unique visual qualities of the camera lens. Coburn freed photography from the shackles of representation when he made some of the first abstract photographs. And, he was the first photographer to exploit the expressive potential of the aerial view. He was also a master printer. He employed several difficult and unusual printing practices, including the rare gum-platinum process and the exacting photogravure. Photogravure is a photomechanical process for reproducing the appearance of a continuous range of tones in a photograph. Since he wanted as many people as possible to see his work, Coburn considered the photogravure as important as an original print.

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Alvin Langdon Coburn, Vortograph of Ezra Pound, 1917
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Alvin Langdon Coburn, Vortograph of Ezra Pound (1917), Gelatin silver print
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"An Introduction to the Economic Nature of the United States" by Ezra Pound

On the Protocols By Ezra Pound

"Social Credit: An Impact " by Ezra Pound

America, Roosevelt and the Causes of the Present War by Ezra Pound

Literary Essays of Ezra Pound,+A+Retrospect.pdf

The Letters of Ezra Pound to James Joyce, with Pound’s Critical Essays and Articles about Joyce

Poems of Ezra Pound

Letters of Ezra Pound: 1907-1941

Jefferson And/Or Mussolini by Ezra Pound

“Ezra Pound Speaking” Radio Speeches of World War II

Eustace Mullins - Ezra Pound, pt 1 of 4

Eustace Mullins - Ezra Pound, pt 2 of 4

Eustace Mullins - Ezra Pound, pt 3 of 4

Eustace Mullins - Ezra Pound, pt 4 of 4

Ezra Pound - Various Audio Recordings

The Music of Ezra Pound

The Cantos of Ezra Pound

Ezra Pound - Planners

The Trial of Ezra Pound

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